More than 600 teaching jobs in UAE: A guide to the market and how much you can earn

Recruitment programmes are under way, with many schools looking to hire maths teachers

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Recruitment drives are gathering pace at schools in the UAE, with hundreds of jobs on offer, many for the next academic year.

Teachers specialising in core subjects such as maths and science are in high demand and many schools are prepared to pay more to secure their services.

The majority of teaching roles are in Dubai, with several jobs also on offer in Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah.

According to major education job site Tes — formerly known as the Times Educational Supplement — more than 600 roles are advertised in the Emirates.

A snapshot of some of the jobs on offer

Major school groups such as Taaleem, Gems Education and Aldar have advertised openings at their schools for the next academic year, which begins in August.

There are vacancies for teachers of subjects from design technology, food technology and psychology to business and physical education.

Uptown International School in Dubai is looking to hire a school counsellor, while Jebel Ali School Dubai is looking for a head of secondary to join their school in August 2023.

Jumeirah College is in need of a head of music, while Swiss International Scientific School in Dubai is looking for tutors for their boarding school.

Dubai British School Jumeirah Park wants to hire a head of maths to start in August, while Safa Community School is seeking a secondary maths teacher who can begin immediately.

Cranleigh Abu Dhabi needs a maths teacher for their senior school.

Aldar Education wants a head for their Ministry of Education department, covering Arabic, Islamic studies and social studies, at Abdulla bin Otaiba Charter School in Abu Dhabi.

Gems Metropole School in Motor City is looking for a physics teacher to join its staff inn September.

Leadership roles have also been advertised. Amity International School Abu Dhabi is looking to recruit a head of inclusion and Aldar Academies aim to hire a vice principal for one of their schools.

Most jobs are to start in August and candidates are required to apply by late January or early February, depending on the role.

Deepika Thapar Singh, principal at Credence High School, said it advertised roles in December and was looking to fill 20 positions.

Ms Singh said the school was looking to hire teachers for subjects including maths, science, English and Islamic studies.

"Maths is, I think, the biggest challenge. We see people who are very good in mathematics and science get into engineering and technology, but those getting into teaching seems to be a limited number," Ms Singh said.

What kind of degree do you need to teach in the UAE?

To become a teacher in the UAE, you need an appropriate approved teaching certification. Many schools require further experience.

Candidates need a qualified teacher status (QTS) or an equivalent qualification.

To become a specialist subject teacher in a secondary school, your degree should be aligned with the subject you want to teach.

Teachers will need a degree in their chosen subject area, as well as a teaching degree.

Also, some schools require area specialists to demonstrate proven experience of teaching the subject.

Ms Singh said teachers would typically have to apply online with their CV, with schools then building a shortlist of candidates to interview. The next stage of the process involves teaching a demonstration class.

Many teachers have flown from other countries to give the class.

Recruiters have also travelled to countries including India to hire talent, Ms Singh said.

Five top tips for teachers moving to the UAE

Thomas Blakemore, a primary school teacher at Kent College Dubai, creates content online to support teachers interested in moving to the UAE. Here are some of his tips:

  • Ask the school questions because that will help you with the process. Doubt is normal and the closer you get to boarding a flight, it is normal to feel anxious and overthink your decision. Ask people for advice and join online communities to make friends.
  • Make sure you are organised. Contact HR staff at your school to find out whether they have a checklist of things they want you to do.
  • Do your research. Planning is essential and will help you to deal with nerves. Research the area you are moving to and try to get excited about the move.
  • Be a tourist when you arrive. Once you move, it is easy to sit in you room, but you need to go out and explore.
  • The first month in a new country can be quite expensive, so make sure you budget.

Teachers' pay: what you need to know

  • Salaries vary from school to school, but typically teachers can expect to make between Dh9,000 and Dh14,000 a month ($2,450-$3,800) depending on experience and qualification.
  • Top-end schools tend to pay Dh16,000 to Dh17,000 a month – plus a monthly housing allowance of up to Dh6,000. These tend to be British curriculum schools rated "outstanding" or "very good", as well as American schools.
  • It is becoming more common for schools to provide accommodation, sometimes in an apartment block with other teachers, rather than giving teachers a housing allowance.
  • Maths and science teachers are in high demand and some schools will pay up to Dh3,000 more for staff who can teach those subjects.
  • At the other end of the market, teachers in some Indian schools, where fees are lower and competition among applicants is intense, can be paid Dh3,000 a month.
  • In Indian schools, it has also become common for teachers to share residential accommodation, living in a block with colleagues.
Updated: January 15, 2023, 6:48 AM