herald

Tuesday 18 December 2018

Our teachers are among the best paid in the world, says new study

Irish teachers are among the highest paid in the world - despite a raft of pay cuts in recent years.

The annual Education at a Glance report from the international organisation, the OECD, has revealed that Irish primary teachers are sixth in the world in pay terms, while, at second level, they are in seventh position.

The international comparison is based on salaries in 2012 and it notes that salaries in a number of countries, including Ireland, were significantly affected by the 2008 economic crash.

In the interests of transparency between currencies and living costs in more than 30 countries worldwide, salaries were converted using a measure based on purchasing power in different countries.

Using this measure, the salaries of Irish teachers at the top of the pay scale is given as the equivalent of €48,430, compared with an EU average of about €35,500 and an average in OECD countries of €36,415.

However, Luxembourg tops the pay league for both primary and second-level teachers.

Hours

Salaries there are in excess of the euro equivalent of €90,000, according to the report which provides data on the structure, finances and performance of the education systems in countries worldwide.

The report said that Ireland had a "promising outlook", with 93pc of young people in Ireland expected to graduate from upper secondary education in their lifetimes.

The Teachers Union of Ireland (TUI) General Secretary John MacGabhann said that the report "outlines that Irish teachers teach longer hours at second level than their international counterparts. They also continue to earn less than those with similar qualifications and experience in other sectors in Ireland."

He said: "The report highlights that the number of teaching hours per annum for Irish second-level teachers is 735, which is far in excess of the OECD average of 675.

"We would estimate that up to half of teachers under 35 are on contracts of less than full hours.

"In actual fact, many Irish teachers on part-time hours do not earn a living wage."

fdillon@herald.ie

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