Berlin will simplify path to work for foreign-born teachers

Berlin will simplify path to work for foreign-born teachers

In an attempt to fill job vacancies, the state of Berlin is set to simplify the process for foreign-born teachers hoping to take up posts at primary and secondary schools in the city.

Easier path laid for expat school teachers in Berlin

The city state of Berlin wants to make it easier for foreign-born teachers to have their qualifications recognised in Germany, with the hope that more teachers will make the move to Berlin. The switch will mean that teachers who gained their qualifications internationally will be able to enter the teaching profession in Germany much more quickly.

Those who would like to teach in German schools should be able to demonstrate an appropriate level of German. For example, they must be able to independently write a complex text in German on any given topic.

Berlin faces school teacher shortage

Germany's primary and secondary schools are in the throws of a major staff shortage. Currently, around 1.000 teaching positions remain vacant in the capital alone. The city's new policy comes after the Berlin branch of the Left Party found that, in 2021, of the 400 applications made by non-German teaching professionals to work in Berlin schools, only six were successful. On top of this, only 30 expat teachers were recognised as having completed an “adaptation course”, where teachers who have qualified in other countries attended specialist seminars. 

For Berlin’s Left Party, the new policy is considered a scant approach to remedy the considerable teaching shortage. Education policy spokesperson for the party, Franziska Brychcy, is demanding that school teachers who are only qualified to teach one subject should still be considered when looking to plug Berlin’s shortage. “A teacher with one subject is better than none,” Brychcy said, speaking at the annual Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs.

Thumb image credit: IM PHOTO BOX /

Olivia Logan


Olivia Logan

Editor for Germany at IamExpat Media. Olivia first came to Germany in 2013 to work as an Au Pair. Since studying English Literature and German in Scotland, Freiburg and Berlin...

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