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Remote Scottish School Offers Big Salary To Teach Three Students

Clare Fitzgerald
Photo Credit: 1. AGF / Getty Images 2. REDA&CO / Getty Images

The United Kingdom’s most remote primary school is looking to hire a head teacher. In a recent job posting, Fair Isle Primary School, located on the remote Scottish island of the same name, stated it’s in need of someone to teach its three students, with the help of two support teachers.

Fair Isle is located between Orkney and Shetland. It’s a two-and-a-half-hour ferry ride or 25-minute flight from Shetland, and its three square miles are best known for their natural beauty, knitwear, and population of seabirds. A recent count noted some 10,000 puffins call the island home, far surpassing its human population of 60 residents.

Fair Isle's lighthouse along the coast

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According to the job advertisement, the full-time, permanent position will be 35 hours a week. The successful candidate will be paid a yearly salary of £56,787 (approximately $78,000 US), with an additional annual payment of £2,265 ($3,111 US) provided under the Scottish government’s Distant Islands Allowance.

Along with the stated qualifications, the school is looking for someone who has “a can-do attitude, vision, energy, initiative, good communication skills and self-discipline.”

Fair Isle at sunset

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“This is a tremendous opportunity for a head teacher, or aspiring head teacher, to join the vibrant community in Fair Isle and continue to take the school forward,” said Robin Calder, Quality Improvement Manager.

Fair Isle Primary School is a non-denominational educational institution that offers schooling from early years through to primary 7. Students are sent to a boarding school in Shetland upon reaching secondary school age.

Those chosen to be interviewed will have their expenses paid for, and a relocation package will be offered to the successful candidate. They will be required to join the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme or undergo a PVG Scheme update prior to a formal offer of employment being presented.

Buildings in front of a hill

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“There are lots of opportunities for creative teaching,” said Susannah Parnaby, Parent Council Chairwoman. “The children are always keen to get involved with our school garden, and to study the natural world and the island’s culture with music, knitting and crofting important parts of this.

“For the right person, Fair Isle is a great place to live and provides the opportunity to build relationships with the children and a supportive local community,” she continued. “Fair Isle has always been a connected isle and we are proud to have a school that has enabled our children to develop skills that have equipped them to pursue diverse careers across the U.K. and further afield.”

Cliff overlooking the ocean

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Those interested in applying for the position have until August 29, 2021.