- POSTED: 03 Oct 2013 21:02
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Teachers in Singapore were ranked seventh out of 21 countries in an index on the status of the profession, ahead of Finland, Britain and the United States.
SINGAPORE: Teachers in Singapore were ranked seventh out of 21 countries in an index on the status of the profession, ahead of Finland, Britain and the United States.
According to the Varkey GEMS Foundation 2013 Global Teacher Status Index, the Republic ranks third in the aspect of respondents here having confidence in the national education system, assigning it an average score of 6.7 on a scale of 10, only behind Turkey and China.
Four in five respondents here — the fifth-highest proportion among the 21 nations surveyed — said they would encourage their children to pursue a career in teaching, according to the study findings released on Thursday.
However, while Singaporeans thought highly of teachers in most regards, respondents believed that the fair wage for a teacher should be 14 per cent less than the average actual wage of US$37,144 (S$46,400), which was the highest among the nations in the study. In contrast, 95 per cent of the countries believed teachers’ pay should be more than the actual wage received.
The Varkey GEMS Foundation 2013 Global Teacher Status Index, which surveys 1,000 respondents in each country, aims to measure key indicators of the status of teachers in their country, including the public perception of the profession and salaries.
The index, drawn up by Professor Peter Dolton, Professor of Economics at Sussex University and Dr Oscar Marcenaro-Gutierrez, Associate Professor at the Department of Statistics and Econometrics at the University of Malaga, is based on in-depth opinion polling conducted by British market research firm Populus.
Said Prof Dolton: “An evaluation of teacher status can provide valuable insight for both educationalists and governments to improve educational outcomes. Furthermore, a global comparison may highlight trends and similarities across countries that can be evaluated to aid educational reforms.”
The results show major differences across countries in the way teachers are perceived by the public, for example teachers in China enjoy a high perceived status and teachers in Israel at the other end experiencing the lowest status, Prof Dolton said.
“This informs who decides to become a teacher in each country, how they are respected and how they are financially rewarded. Ultimately, this affects the kind of job they do in teaching our children,” he added.