Strike It Lucky

Is it true that the older you become, the more right-wing you become?  I fancy myself as quite the socialist but as I sit here in Delhi reading about the teachers’ strike in England I find my sympathy somewhat waning.

In the past, working in the public sector meant a rubbish salary in return for job asurity and a decent pension. Fair enough. This now has no relevance to most of us today. Teachers now ear 2 – 3 times the national average.  I know a teacher at a state high school who earns £45,000!  This is to teach a subject she got a third in at university (i.e. 40%) and also received 10 weeks holiday plus national and bank holidays and gets to finish work at 3.30pm.

I do not find myself bothered about the reduction in her pension when she enjoys and will enjoy a salary that some double income families would dream of.  I also note that all of us in the private sector know that we will never receive a state pension, despite our NI contributions.

The only thing that does achieve and eyebrow raise, is guess which public worker will retire on a decent pension?…MPs of course!

Bubbly

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3 Comments to “Strike It Lucky”

  1. An interesting debate had on the radio today about this. Most of these people are only claiming a £12,000 a year or less pension. A lot less than those in the private sector.

    Also teachers don’t just finish at 3.30pm – they work for 3 to 4 hours after 3.30pm at home, marking, assessing etc… They have to use so many days of the holidays to prep for lessons and other admin work. The list goes on. My sister-in-law works evening and weekends to keep up with the reports etc.. she needs to produce for her classes.

    I am bothered about pension reductions because if we do not think carefully about this now, we are going to have elderly people living in poverty and our private taxes for people on middle incomes are just going to go on increasing. In the private sector, pension offerings is part of a package we look at when accepting a job roles. Why shouldn’t this be the case in the public sector. The situation is a lot more complicated than the media often represent.

    I see teaching as one of the most important jobs in the world and of course they should be earning more than average wage for the job they do. Anything less would devalue their worth. Why on earth do people pay astronomical house prices to get into a good school. Because of the teachers. Other public sector workers get that for pushing paper around – how does that work?

    Apologies if I sound aggressive. I am not normally such as socialist but I do feel this government has turned workers upon workers and a great divide is being created between the public and private sector, using public impatience and intolerance as a way of implementing conservative ideology.

    Bubbly, I think we have role reversal on this one!!!

  2. Bunty,

    So teachers start work at around 8.30pm and finish at around 6.30pm? Guess what – practically every full-time worker in the entire country does the same.

    The average private sector pension is about £4000 a year. Add your state pension to this and you get to around £8000. That is still less than the £12,000 that teachers get. On top of this, private sector workers contribute more – about 5% of their salary, and get less holidays – average 20 days a year.

    If teachers are so important, what about nurses and carers? Who decided that they play a lesser role and so get steam-rollered when it comes to pensions? I know nurses who work long after their shift has finished for no extra pay because if they didn’t, the health system would break down. A carer’s role, expecially if they are a family member, is 24/7. They get paid similar to as if they were on unemployment benefit.

    You just simply cannot have one rule for one set of public-sector workers i.e. teachers, and another set of rules for the rest.

    Also, we are living longer, that is fact. We live 6 years longer now than we did in the 1980s when the system was last revised. Money cannot just be produced out of thin air to pay for those extra 6 years. Public sector workers need to take responsibility for their own futures. There is no such thing as a free lunch.

  3. I’m afraid I don’t agree with your sentiments, Bunty that teachers have one of the most important jobs in the world. Perhaps people move to expensive areas for good schools precisely because most teachers are not good at their jobs and they could be blamed for distorting the housing market (not serious about that!).

    I work more hours than teachers as do all my friends and family memebers and I know I am not going to receive a state pension and holidays are holidays – teachers get loads. I do admire them for their stamina and patience, I would not like to teach children of any age but people do in general opt for jobs that suit their personalities. Teaching is a job just like any other, we will all feel the pinch and we all seemingly have to take it.

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