A FORMER contestant on a reality TV show says he is dreaming of working abroad now the series is over.

Life is back in the classroom for 29-year-old Shabaz Ali from Blackburn, who spent time filming popular Channel 4 show The Circle last winter.

Currently supply teaching at Stonyhurst College, the 29-year-old played a teacher called Alice on the show, which sees contestants choose to appear as themselves or a 'catfish', playing games and rating each other to win.

Mr Ali managed to get to the semi-finals but watched the finals from the side-lines as Natalya Platanova, aka Felix won, in scenes aired in April.

But now, he is dreaming of life abroad teaching science at British schools in different countries.

He said: “I’m looking for my next adventure and I want to teach abroad, but I need to find the right school and place, because I don’t want to be stuck somewhere.

“Life after the show has been the same since before it. I got a few people stopping me in Boots and Tesco but other than that it’s business as usual.”

Mr Ali was teaching at The Hollins School in Accrington at the time and says he was nervous about going back after the Easter break. He said: “I thought the kids were not going to want to learn science when their teacher is on TV, they’d want to ask about it.”

Originally, Mr Ali was due to enter The Circle on series two, but had to pull out due to last minute school arrangements. Producers called him to join the following series and he finally entered.

He said: “It was surreal and the experience was madness, it just did not feel real to me. You go through so many emotions on the show.”

Since leaving, the former contestant revealed they all have a WhatsApp group, but he is particularly close to winner Natalya, Andy, Jay and Pippa.

The science teacher is also highly active on Tiktok and Instagram, with over 40k followers.

He said: “A lot of pupils find me on social media, they were really supportive and wanted all the gossip.

“It really helped with the teaching as well. They respect you more when you’re this cool teacher making TikToks, I never had any behavioural problems, they never wanted to disappoint me.”

Before working as a teacher, Mr Ali worked as a lab assistant at a morgue in London, before coming across a bursary for teaching and taking it back at home.

He said: “I fell in love with teaching while on the job, but I did it because I was bored, then I ended up loving it."