Edition 1492
15 September 2018
Edition: 1492

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Portugal teachers among best paid

by TPN/Lusa, in News · 13-09-2018 09:56:00 · 0 Comments

Teachers in Portugal’s schools tend to earn far more than university graduates working in other fields. This is in contrast to the situation in other member countries of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), with Portugal’s head teachers doing particularly well, according to the report.

Portugal teachers among best paid

Data contained in the OECD report ‘Education at a Glance 2018’ shows that only teachers in Luxembourg earn more than those in Portugal, when measured in relation to workers with a similar educational level in their own country.
Greece’s teachers are in third place, with Germany’s and Finland’s in fourth and fifth.
In Portugal, teachers in primary and secondary education earn around 35 percent more than other graduate workers, while those in pre-school education earn 50 percent more, according to the report.
However, the OECD report notes, the situation relates partly to teachers’ age, given that salary increases with years of service and experience. Portugal has the oldest teachers, on average, in the OECD: from 2005 to 2016, its schools saw a 16-point increase in the percentage of teachers aged over 50, while in the rest of the OECD the increase averaged three points.
In 2016, just one percent of teachers in Portugal’s primary and secondary schools was aged under 30, while in the OECD, this number rose to 11 percent.
The salaries of the most senior teachers in Portugal are also twice that of those at the start of their careers, whereas in other OECD countries, average salaries are higher the older their pupils are.
As for the average salary of head teachers, from pre-school through to secondary school, in Portugal this is twice the level of other workers with the same academic training.
Portugal’s teachers are also portrayed in the report as relatively privileged where timetables are concerned compared to colleagues in other countries, with fewer teaching hours and more time for class preparation and marking.
In Portugal’s secondary schools, teachers must teach 616 hours a year, against an OECD average of 701 hours, and they must spend 920 hours in school, against an OECD average of 1,178 hours per year.
However, here again age is a complicating factor, since workload and demands on teachers evolve over their careers and, in Portugal, with its older teachers, they benefit from a workload reduction after a certain number of years of service.
Reacting to the study, Portugal’s prime minister said the country’s civil servants, including teachers, should get higher pay.
In the same 462-page report, Portugal was found to be the OECD member country with the fourth lowest levels of education among young adults.
Only Mexico, Turkey and Spain have worse records within this level, the OECD said.
Meanwhile, around one in every seven young adults in Portugal is a ‘NEET’ - not in education, employment or training, ranking the country 10th worst on this measure. Last year, 15.2 percent of 18 to 24-year-olds were classed as NEETs.
Three out of ten 25 to 43-year-olds in Portugal have not completed secondary education, according to data from the international report relating to 2016, which placed Portugal near the bottom of the list of 35 OECD countries.
While far above the OECD average of 15 percent and European Union average of 14 percent for secondary dropouts, Portugal stands out as the country that has improved most in recent times. As recently as 2011, the majority of young Portuguese adults (56 percent) had not finished secondary school, meaning that in just five years, the rate fell by 26 percentage points.
A total of 38 percent of men aged 25 to 34 never finished secondary education, against 23 percent of women. This 15-point gender gap “is the largest of all OECD countries”, the report states, comparing it with an average gap for all member countries of just three percentage points.
In Portugal, there are similar gaps at the other levels of education, yet men on average earn higher pay.
“Women earn less, irrespective of their educational level and the difference is greater in Portugal than on average in the OECD,” the report reads.
In Portugal overall, one in four adults failed to finish secondary school – more than twice the OECD average. Among youngsters, the situation is less dramatic and has improved greatly in recent years: while in 2007 over half did not graduate from high school, last year, 70 percent did.
The report links poor or incomplete schooling with wage inequality.
“Portugal has one of the highest percentages of adults without secondary education of all OECD countries and is above the average of wage inequalities,” it says.
Another of the aspects analysed is the relationship between the socio-economic status of the families and opportunities for access and academic success. In access to education, the report stresses the importance of childcare or being with educators from an early age; in Portugal, it says, children from better-off families do better.
The difference between the percentage of children in day care or kindergartens whose mothers have completed higher education and children whose mothers have not passed the compulsory schooling is 17 points, as against an OECD average gap of 10 points.

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Edition 1492
15 September 2018
Edition: 1492

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

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