Posts Tagged ‘Teachers pay’

Why Many Teachers Leave

August 15, 2016

Megan Webb


I would continue to be a teacher even if my pay was substantially cut, but I am very much in the minority. Teachers get paid better than some might think, but not as much as they deserve.

One teacher penned a very thoughtful piece on why she chose to leave the profession:


Heartbreaking – it’s the only word that can describe how it feels to walk away from something that was once your dream. The one job you always wanted to do, the person you wanted to become.

For the first time in 10 years, I am not anxiously preparing my classroom, anticipating the arrival of twenty energetic children and a new year full of learning, laughter and excitement.

Instead, I am preparing myself for a new career in the business world. And not because I wanted to. I absolutely loved my teaching job at Equestrian Trails Elementary. But sadly, love just isn’t enough.

Why am I leaving? I am being forced to make a decision between the absolute love of teaching and living up to my potential to support myself. Since graduating from college, I have been fortunate enough to focus on my work, and ignore my stagnant income by living with my parents.

It has been a very comfortable living arrangement that’s worked well for my family and me, and I just assumed I would move out when I “met the right guy.”  But, that hasn’t happened yet, and at the age of 32, I decided it is time for me to move out on my own and become a fully independent adult.

There is just one giant obstacle standing in my way: I simply cannot support myself comfortably with my current income.

A year’s experience worth just $274

I’ve always known that education would be far from lucrative, and I have always been accepting of that. However, I never anticipated that my salary would not grow along with my years of experience.

When I started teaching in the Palm Beach County School District a decade ago, I made $33,830. Today, I make $43,239.

While that’s a lot more than I made in my first year of teaching, it’s just $2,464 more per year than an incoming first-year teacher today, or an additional $274 for each year of experience.

When I began my career, the hope for a more comfortable future seemed attainable. The pay scale in 2007 reflected a more sizeable difference of $6,600 between a first and tenth year teacher.

Unfortunately, since I began teaching in 2006, we have seen serious changes to our pay structure, and a lack of substantial raises.

Compound that with an inflation rate of 19.6% over the past ten years, rising healthcare costs, and a change to our state-funded retirement pension (requiring a 3% deduction from our paycheck), and we as a teaching class have gained very little ground in a decade.

Discouragingly, the prospect of meaningful increases in the future seems dim.


To read more of her fabulous essay click on this link:


Click on the link to read The Countries Where Teachers Are Paid the Most

Click on the link to read You Can Get Paid Like a Monkey Without Being One

Click on the link to read Which Country Pays the Most for Its Teachers

 Click on the link to read “Better Pay Leads to Better teachers”: Prove it!

The Countries Where Teachers Are Paid the Most

December 3, 2015



Luxembourg gets the gold medal by a fair distance!



Click on the link to read You Can Get Paid Like a Monkey Without Being One

Click on the link to read Which Country Pays the Most for Its Teachers

 Click on the link to read “Better Pay Leads to Better teachers”: Prove it!

You Can Get Paid Like a Monkey Without Being One

February 8, 2015


They say that if you pay peanuts you get monkeys, but great teachers don’t teach for the peanuts.


Click on the link to read Which Country Pays the Most for Its Teachers

Click on the link to read “Better Pay Leads to Better teachers”: Prove it!
Click on the link to read The Overwhelming Responsibilies of the Modern Teacher

Sometimes the Union Makes me Embarrassed to Call Myself a Teacher

November 5, 2012

I know that is it very unpopular for a teacher to be criticising the Education Union and I invite my readers who have been assisted by the union to defend them if they wish.

I was angered to hear that teachers through the union have been sending notes home to parents stating that they will not be writing end of year reports for their students. Why? Because they haven’t been paid enough money. Well, any teacher who abides by this nonsensical ruling doesn’t deserve to get paid a cent more!

I believe that teachers should be paid more than they do, but what a teacher gets paid is not as urgent as their duty to put their students first. Teachers and nurses do a fine job and deserve more than what they are earning. But we knew when we signed up for the job that the pay wasn’t fantastic. Yet, we still chose to become teachers and nurses. Why?

I hope the answer is because we felt that making a difference was more important than making a fortune.

The union have blinkered our teachers. Instead of helping us to nurture and inspire our students they have tried to make us selfish and unprofessional. Writing reports is a professional duty. Giving parents current and comprehensive feedback on the progress of their children is of paramount importance. Failing to do so on account of a few dollars is outrageous!

The children are not the ones underpaying us. The parents are not the ones to blame either. Leave them out of this. We are supposed to put them first. We are not supposed to lose sight of what we are trying to achieve here.

The unions are a shameless bunch. They have a record of bullying non member teachers (like myself) and through their greed have turned a sympathetic public well and truly off our cause.

I realise that many (if not all) will disagree with me. I encourage them to do so. This blog is about giving everyone the opportunity to debate the issues that effect education in a robust and thorough fashion.

I just can’t help but agree with the assessment of this parent who wrote of her outrage at receiving one of these letters:

I received late last week from my children’s school indicating that their teachers will not be writing any comments (apart from general behavioural ones) in the end of year reports this year. This means that students will have a very scant record of the year’s work particularly when it comes to specialist areas like LOTE and art. I have a son in prep so his end of year report for this year is pretty important.

I think asking students to forgo feedback for the year so that teachers can get a few more dollars shows a breathtaking lack of professionalism on the part of the teachers and an entitlement mentality that is just extraordinarily arrogant. If I had tried this sort of tactic in the private sector – refusing to complete reports for clients because I wanted more money – I would certainly have been sacked (and rightfully so).

Click on the link to read If Teachers Were Paid More I Wouldn’t Have Become One

Click on the link to read Pressure in the Workplace

Click on the link to read Sick Teachers Need to be Arrested not Fired!

Click on the link to read Teaching Union Wants Porn on the National Curriculum

Different Professions, Same Experiences

September 5, 2012

It’s interesting how teachers often complain as if their problems and challenges are completely unique.

Some point out that they take their work home unlike many other professions.

Others talk about the low wages and hostile work environment.

Many talk about the troubles they have from bullying parents.

In truth, there are a myriad of different professions that struggle with similar problems to that of a teacher. They may not be similar occupations on the surface, but they can have almost identical constraints.

I recently had the pleasure of reading Vadim Chelom’s brilliant new book, Vet Bites Dog. Vadim is a veterinarian and fellow blogger who has a keen interest in educational affairs. He used his expertise to design a program for teachers to help instruct children about dog safety practices. In Vet Bites Dog, a book about his experiences working at a not-for-profit animal clinic, Chelom writes the following:

I take another deep breath. 8PM is just around the corner. People often say that being a veterinarian must be hard because our patients can’t talk to us. The truth is, it’s not our patients which make our work a challenge. More often than not it’s the animal on the other end of the lead. Learning to treat pets is easy. Learning to ‘treat’ their owners is what takes years of practice, boundless patience and expert negotiation skills.

Sounds familiar to the plight of a teacher?

I think it’s important to realise that teaching has it’s unique issues and challenges, but essentially all job with deadlines, paperwork, bosses, expectations and key performance indicators are distinctly similar in many ways.

I urge you to grab a copy of Dr. Chelom’s book. It’s hilarious, revealing and brilliantly written. You may, like me, realise you have much more in common with a vet than had previously thought.

Click on the link to read If Teachers Were Paid More I Wouldn’t Have Become One

Our Pay Isn’t the Problem

August 22, 2012

Teachers have more to complain about than their pay. Sure, it would be nice to get paid more, but let’s face it, our nation can’t afford a substantial pay rise and we are not being completely ripped off. No teacher enters into the profession with the intention of making a sizeable income.  We know that we will always be paid less than the ideal amount.  

It is the conditions we face that we should be most concerned about. The obsession with changing curriculums every two years without any apparent reason, the increase in planning paperwork that robs us of time to devote to other aspects of our job and the crazy overregulation which has shifted the focus from quality education to lawsuit damage control.

Rita Panahi is right to point out that a teacher’s pay is no reason to strike:

Why, one wonders, do presumably intelligent people study for four years to enter a profession where they find the pay so unacceptable?

It’s akin to buying a house near an airport then complaining about aircraft noise.

If money is what motivates you then teaching is probably not the job for you.

Higher pay comes with greater scrutiny but teachers have fought hard against attempts to link their wages to their performance.

Under the current system, which the Australian Education Union desperately wants to retain, almost all teachers automatically move up the pay scale every year regardless of their ability, effort or suitability for the job.

This absurdity helps to explain a 2009 survey of teachers which found that nine out of 10 of them don’t believe their school would acknowledge improvements in the quality of their work, while seven out of 10 believed their consistently underperforming colleagues were in no danger of losing their jobs.

Actually, despite the persistent whingeing we’ve grown used to from teachers, they are hardly surviving on the breadline.

A first year teacher can expect to earn around $57,000, which is more than graduate paramedics, accountants and substantially more than nurses. This can rise to more than $90,000 at leading teacher level.

Not bad for a job with enviable hours and holidays of which most of us can only dream.

Click on the link to read If Teachers Were Paid More I Wouldn’t Have Become One
Click on the link to read “Better Pay Leads to Better teachers”: Prove it!
Click on the link to read The Overwhelming Responsibilies of the Modern Teacher

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