The new school year officially kicked off today, September 11, with thousands of teachers taking their posts in elementary, junior and senior high school across the country. The inherent problems in the education sector of Greece are palpable and long-standing, especially with regards to teachers’ salaries since the crisis hit 10 years ago.
As shown by OECD data, teachers’ salaries in Greece are among the lowest in the Organisation’s member states, and in many cases lower, even in countries with lower living standards.
The annual earnings of a kindergarten teacher in Greece hire for the first time stand at $ 19,825 (€ 17,957), when in Luxembourg, the country with the highest income among all OECD states, the salaries amount to $ 74,400 yearly. The Greek teacher in kindergarten is paid less money even than his colleagues in Mexico and Turkey while being on par with teachers in Colombia and the Czech Republic. The worst paid of all OECD states are kindergarten teachers in Lithuania with annual earnings of $ 13,000.
Greek primary school teachers are among the lowest paid in the OECD member states. A newly-hired teacher earns $ 19,825 (€ 17,957) when his Turkish colleague gets paid $ 25,955 and a Spanish teacher $ 40,813. The only countries that pay less are Latvia, Hungary, Brazil, Slovakia, Poland, and Colombia.
In high school, a newly appointed teacher in Greece (both in junior and senior high school) receives similar fees as teachers in the kindergarten and primary levels, as they receive an annual gross salary of $ 19,825 (€ 17,957).
A high school teacher in Greece with 15 years service gets $ 26,198 (€ 23,730) when his colleagues in Portugal are paid $ 43,179 and in Ireland with $ 63,195. The worst paid – 4 places below the Greek teachers are their colleagues in Lithuania ($ 21,084).
Teachers’ salaries are the average gross salaries of educational personnel according to official pay scales, before the deduction of taxes, including the employee’s contributions for retirement or health care plans, and other contributions or premiums for social insurance or other purposes, but less the employer’s contribution to social security and pension.