It’s just suddenly dawned on me that my starting salary as a newbie Teacher, at £21588, is just £88 MORE than my starting salary as a Design Engineer back in 2004!!
In today’s money, that’s £7500 LESS than I was being paid as a trainee design engineer!
Is it any wonder that they can’t attract many of the top graduates who would be AWESOME teachers, but just can’t afford to live on such a low salary.
Unfortunately I live in one of the most expensive areas of the UK, yet teachers here don’t qualify for increased pay due to cost of living, unlike those living in the London Fringe area, some who have much lower living costs!
I know of one teacher in her third year of teaching who takes home about £1450 after student loan payment. She then spends £750 of this on rent, £200 on bills and council tax, £150 running a car, then £200 on food. This leaves her with just £150 a month to spend on clothes, socialising, gifts etc…
On top of the low pay, the working hours of a teacher during term time are ludicrous! You can easily end up working a 60 hour week!
If you average this out including the holidays (which we still have to work through planning lessons and marking etc…), it averages out at far more than a 40 hour week.
So in reality, it’s long hours, low pay, continually changing targets from different governments, and occasionally you’ll get a grateful child who appreciates the efforts you put in to creating a meaningful and exciting lesson!
Ultimately, at least you can say it’s never a dull job, and no two days are ever the same! 10 out of 10 for the entertainment factor.