Teacher Notice Period

One of the biggest challenges for teachers leaving their role, or the profession entirely, is identifying the notice period required. The teacher notice period is different depending on which country you work in and if you are a teacher in the US, the timeframe may differ from state to state.

If you want to read about Notice Periods for American Schools scroll down!

UK Teacher Notice Period

In the UK the notice period required is set out following national guidelines. Essentially, this allows all UK schools to follow the same recruitment period and ensures that jobs are available at the same time teachers are looking for new roles. This makes resigning from teaching in the UK a relatively simple process as schools plan recruitment around these key dates.

You can read more about the UK Teacher Resignation Dates in this article but the following table is a good indicator of the notice period required in UK schools.

I want to leave…I need to resign by…
31st December31st October
30th April28th February
31st August31st May

In other words, you resign at the half term and leave at the following end of the term. If you want to leave at half-term or at a different time of year, you need to read this!

USA Teacher Notice Period

Leave Teaching at the Summer Break

Essentially the story for teachers in the US is less clear. The expectation is that Teachers resign in the first week of July if they don’t intend to return to their role after the Summer Break. This gives school boards enough time to recruit a suitable replacement for the teaching recommencing and somewhat aligns teacher recruitment within States and Nationally. Generally speaking, this is the route you should aim for as it is the most straightforward and supportive of the education infrastructure. However, it might not always be the route you wish to take.

Leave teaching mid-year

The other route to a professional exit from teaching is by seeking consent from the school board or superintendent depending on your locality. As this would likely be mid-year the school would aim to keep you employed until a suitably qualified replacement has been appointed. This can be fairly unconventional and you are likely to feel more guilt if leaving classes before the usual Summer break. However, this is sometimes the best route for your needs and the healthiest decision for all. Don’t be afraid to explore this option.

The Resignation Golden Rule

Your contract of employment will clearly identify the notice period required. In conclusion, should refer to this in all cases relating to your employment before deciding when to offer your resignation. If you don’t have a copy of your contract, speak to the HR or Personnel advisor for your school.


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