Teachers' wages up in proposed funding reform

Under the Education Ministry's new remuneration model, teachers' wages will increase, but so will the number of work hours making up a single rate of pay, the ministry announced Monday.

The new remuneration model is to see monthly wages for 21 hours of weekly work increase from €420 to €680 per 30 hours' work.

The monthly remuneration per an hour of weekly work, then, would increase from €20 to €22.67.

For the lowest-paid teachers, however, this would in effect mean a 62% wage increase as the number of hours making up a single rate of pay would go up.

According to the new model 21 recompensed work hours will be allotted to teaching, while 9 will be reserved for preparation.

Under the scheme, teachers will be earning €884 a month for a 40-hour work week as opposed to the current €798. 

Wages will not increase for those who teach grades 7 to 9 or 10 to 12 in schools with less than 21 (regional schools) or 64 (city schools) pupils in the respective grades.

Expert teachers with qualification rated grade 3 and 4 will be earning even more, with cash from the so-called 'motivational fund'. 

The Education Ministry said that head teachers will be shouldering more power and responsibility as a result of the changes, with schools receiving 13% more money for the motivational fund to dole out to teachers undertaking extra work and showing good results. 

LETA reported Monday that the number of schoolchildren per teacher will increase from 9.26 to 11.86 as part of the reform.

Earlier today Education Minister Kārlis Šadurskis said in an interview that teachers' salaries would increase €200 to €300 from September 1, the start of the academic year in Latvia.

An Education Ministry infographic claims that the teachers who will be leaving as a result of these changes will be safeguarded by a social safety net, the precise nature of which is presumably being worked out.

The wage hikes are also to affect preschool teachers as well as consultants, psychologists and other support personnel.

Latvia will spend an extra €9m to increasing teachers' wages this year, with €27m more to follow in 2017.

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