Teach­ers in China are the world’s most re­spected

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - WORLD - By BO LE­UNG in Lon­don bole­ung@ mail.chi­nadai­lyuk.com

Teach­ers in China com­mand the high­est level of re­spect among the peo­ple they serve, ac­cord­ing to a com­par­i­son of what pop­u­la­tions think about the world’s teach­ers that was com­piled by a Lon­don-based global ed­u­ca­tion char­ity.

The Global Teacher Sta­tus In­dex 2018, which was pub­lished by the Varkey Foun­da­tion, is said to be the most com­pre­hen­sive study ever com­pleted of the level of re­spect af­forded to the world’s teach­ers.

Teacher sta­tus is higher in China than in any of the other 34 coun­tries polled, with 81 per­cent of re­spon­dents in China say­ing they be­lieve pupils re­spect their teach­ers. The global av­er­age is 36 per­cent.

“Five years af­ter the first Global Teacher Sta­tus In­dex in 2013, we can see, once again, China has come top, demon­strat­ing just how much re­spect the Chi­nese pub­lic has for teach­ers,” said Vikas Pota, chair­man of the Varkey Foun­da­tion. “This is cru­cial be­cause, as the Global Teacher Sta­tus In­dex 2018 shows for the very first time, there is a di­rect link be­tween teacher sta­tus and pupil per­for­mance as mea­sured by PISA.”

The study found that, in Eu­rope and Latin Amer­ica, there was more pes­simism about the level of re­spect stu­dents have for their teach­ers in com­par­i­son to Asia and the Mid­dle East. In most Eu­ro­pean coun­tries, most re­spon­dents thought pupils were more likely to dis­re­spect teach­ers than re­spect them.

Brazil was ranked the low­est in the poll, with Is­rael and Italy also in the lower part of the ta­ble.

The sur­vey also found that half of Chi­nese fam­i­lies are likely to en­cour­age their chil­dren to be­come teach­ers.

Rais­ing teacher sta­tus is vi­tal to at­tract­ing good teach­ers and keep­ing them in the pro­fes­sion.” Vikas Pota,

Peo­ple in China, Rus­sia, and Malaysia, said doc­tors are the clos­est pro­fes­sions to teach­ers. While other coun­tries said teach­ers were on a par with nurses, li­brar­i­ans, and so­cial work­ers.

How­ever, in the Chi­nese main­land, teach­ers ac­tu­ally earn less than peo­ple per­ceive. Re­spon­dents thought sec­ondary school teach­ers earned around $19,500 a year, but salaries are around $12,000. Some re­spon­dents said a fair wage for a start­ing sec­ondary school teacher was $21,500.

“Rais­ing teacher sta­tus is vi­tal to at­tract­ing good teach­ers and keep­ing them in the pro­fes­sion. It is teach­ers, af­ter all, who will shape the next gen­er­a­tion and they hold our fu­tures in their hands,” said Pota.

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