Employment of Foreign Teachers in Turkey

ADMD Law Office / Ayca Bayburan

Foreigners are allowed to be employed as a member of the academic staff and as a teacher within Turkish schools, however, such educators are required to obtain a work permits (that allows both work and residence in Turkey) in order to work in Turkey.

The work and residency of foreigners in Turkey are regulated by various regulations. The first and the most important law on the issue is the ‘Law Regarding the Work Permits of Foreigners’ No.4817 dated February 2003. According to such law, foreigners that will be employed by Turkish entities shall obtain a work permit and a work visa in order to commence working under payroll.

Foreign teachers who already reside legally (via a valid residency permit) in Turkey for at least six (6) months are eligible directly to apply to the Ministry of Labor and Social Security in Turkey and therefore proceed with their application during their current stay in Turkey. However, foreign teachers who do not reside legally in Turkey for the last six (6) months will need to first apply to the Turkish Consulate abroad at their own State of residence in order to obtain work permit and work visa before entering into Turkey.

Along with the online application requirements for information and some document submissions, both the foreign teacher and the employing education entity will need to physically submit documentation for the purposes of the work permit application. The following documents shall be submitted to the Ministry of Labor at application by the employer education entity:

  1. Work permit application form;
  2. Foreign personnel application form;
  3. Permit obtained from the Ministry of National Education for the ‘establishment of an education institution and commencement of education’ for public education entities or the license obtained from the same Ministry for private educational institutions.

In addition to the above, the employee foreigner teacher is also required to submit the following documents to the Ministry:

  1. The employment contract;
  2. Copy of the valid passport;
  3. Official Turkish translation of the diploma or temporary graduation certificate;
  4. Prior Permit obtained from the Ministry of National Education, initially approving the employment of the foreigner as a teacher at the employing education entity.