2022 was the year of Zimbabwean nurses and nurse aids. Everyone and anyone who could was becoming either a nurse or nurse-aid as people desperately tried to leave the country for greener pastures. Now, it is the season for Zimbabwean teachers. The United Kingdom is looking for teachers to fill vacancies that have been created by Brexit and an ageing population structure. To help them get their hands on Zimbabwean teachers, the UK will be adjusting the way it awards Visas to qualified teachers from countries such as Zimbabwe. Starting 1 February 2023, Zimbabwean teachers, among other countries, will be able to easily apply for a work Visa to the UK.

From 1 February 2023, teachers with a teaching qualification from the following 9 countries will also be able to apply to TRA for QTS:

  • Ghana
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Jamaica
  • Nigeria
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • Ukraine
  • Zimbabwe

They have been selected for our initial launch because our research shows:

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  • teachers from these countries already have a substantial presence in the UK as valued members of the teaching workforce
  • there is an established interest in teaching in England in these countries
  • we have strong educational ties with the country in question
A notice from the UK Government’s Home Office.

Currently, only teachers from EU Countries and other developed countries were able to easily apply for teaching jobs in the UK this way. Now the UK is opening the process up because those Zimbabwean teachers in the UK seem to have performed well, they have seen people from Zimbabwean expressing interest in the UK teaching jobs and Britain and UK have a strong education link. ZIMSEC and IGSCE are literary one and the same thing in terms of content.

The Zimbabwean government will be angry

The Zimbabwean government has been taking their civil servants for granted over the past couple of years. Civil servants earn a pittance and the government of Zimbabwe has been slowly passing laws to make it hard for civil servants to engage in job action or demand better pay. Currently, civil servants earn around US$240 down from around US$500 per month during the last days of the GNU era. Union leaders have been harassed and arrested for demanding better pay.

Now, teachers in addition to nurses and doctors have a better option. This severely weakens the government’s negotiating power. Whereas teachers have been told to be happy and thankful they can just leave Zimbabwe for overseas. This will likely incense the government which as been used to having its way with them.

When it comes to the impact of more teachers leaving Zimbabwe for the diaspora, the effects are likely to be more nuanced. Fewer teachers will see a drop in the quality of education but Zimbabwe has a lot of graduates who can fill the shoes of those leaving. It remains to be seen how fast the government can train new teachers though. Those who leave will also start sending remittances home. Remittances have been an important source of revenue and foreign currency with estimated proceeds sitting at around US$1 billion according to the RBZ.