Johnson lifts barrier to low-earning migrant teachers

Boris Johnson plans to ditch £30,000 minimum salary threshold for immigrants that would have hit teacher recruitment

Boris Johnson has pledged to scrap a minimum salary threshold for migrants that would have hit teacher recruitment

The prime minister has pledged to scrap a proposed £30,000 minimum salary threshold for immigrants that many feared would exacerbate teacher shortages.

Many teachers in the UK earn less than £30,000 per year– the starting salary outside London is £23,720 – meaning the threshold could have barred those seeking to work here from abroad.


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Mr Johnson plans to introduce an Australian-style “points-based” system of immigration that will take migrants’ salaries into account but could also consider their English proficiency, prior educational achievement and occupation.

Immigration and teacher recruitment

However, Iain Duncan Smith, the former Conservative Party leader who founded the Centre for Social Justice, a think tank that previously championed a £36,700 minimum salary threshold for migrants, said Mr Johnson would need to consider whether he could deliver on promises to control immigration when lifting the cap.

When Mr Duncan Smith put forward the £36,700 proposal, Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said it was "completely out of touch" with the realities of teacher recruitment. 

Mr Johnson set out the “key guiding principles” for the points-based system yesterday and promised that immigration to the UK would fall.

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