UK immigration launches 12 month Mathematics Teacher Exchange visa

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The UK's Home Office has announced a new visa for Chinese maths teachers. The government announced plans to bring around 60 maths teachers from Shanghai to work in the UK in March. The teachers will be expected to train British maths teachers in 'maths hubs'.

The government is concerned at the poor performance of UK students in maths and of the general level of innumeracy in the UK population. An educational lobby group, National Numeracy, warned earlier this year that poor numeracy among UK citizens is costing the country around £20bn per year.

Chinese students have been found to be the most proficient at maths in the world, particularly those in Shanghai, from where it is hoped the teachers will come.

Tier 5 (Government Authorised Exchange) visa

The new visa will be part of the Tier 5 (Government Authorised Exchange) visa stream.

The Tier 5 visa category is for temporary workers. Tier 5 visas last for between one and two years. The Tier 5 (Government Authorised Exchange) subcategory is for people coming to the UK through government-approved channels which are designed to share knowledge, experience and best practice.

In order to qualify for a Tier 5 (Government Authorised Exchange) visa, applicants must first be sponsored by a sponsor with a valid Tier 5 sponsorship certificate. The sponsor will provide the applicant with a certificate of sponsorship which must be presented with the visa application.

National College for Teaching and Leadership

The scheme will be run by The National College for Teaching and Leadership, an executive agency within the Department for Education.

Tier 5 (Government Authorised Exchange) visas last for either one or two years, depending on the scheme. The mathematics teacher visa will last for one year only.

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