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IDEA 2020
  Study 3 / 2020
Teachers' salaries in 2019:
A glimpse of a brighter future ? JULY 20202
 As far as the relative level of pay for teachers compared to other university-educated employees is concerned, the Czech Republic has long occupied a very low position relative to other developed countries. As recently as 2018, the country ranked lowest on this front among all the OECD countries. The relative level of teachers’ pay is one of the factors that determine the attractiveness of the teaching profession. The teaching profession needs to be attractive not only in order to ensure a sufficient supply of teaching staff but also to enable selectivity in teacher recruitment, with an emphasis on teacher quality. The national data for 2019, which have recently been published and on which this study is based, show that this situation has begun to improve substantially. If the pledges originally made by the current government are anything to go by, this situation ought to further improve substantially during 2020 and 2021.
 In 2019 primary school teachers’ average pay reached 123.5% of the average salary in the national economy, up from 114.3% in 2018. This means that teachers’ relative pay level exceeded the previous record, which was set almost fifteen years ago in 2006. The speed of increase in teachers’ salaries in 2019 was far greater than the speed of increase in the salaries of other university-educated public sector employees and very substantially greater than that in the private sector. During 2018-2019 teachers’ mean and median pay rose by more than 28%. The equivalent growth among university-educated employees in the public sector was 19.8% and in the private sector just 14,1%.
 The youngest teachers saw the greatest rise in their relative salaries during 2019, although their salaries had already been relatively high compared with other age groups in the profession since 2011. Teachers in the middle age category, aged between 30 and 49 years,
2 This study represents the authors’ own views and not the official position of the Czech Academy of Sciences’ Economics Institute nor of the Charles University Centre for Economic Research and Graduate Education (CERGE). We are grateful to the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs for allowing us to use the ISPV data collected and managed by company TREXIMA spol. s r. o. The authors thank Štěpán Jurajda, Karel Gargulák, Václav Korbel and Filip Pertold for their valuable comments and advice. We would like to thank the statistics department of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports for consultations on wage indicators of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports. The study was produced with support from the Czech Academy of Sciences as part of its AV21 Strategy programme.

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