Are teachers in India earning enough?


Teachers are often taken for granted. In other words, teaching is taken as a job more than as a profession unlike the medical field and other similar fields. If you are a surgeon, you can charge a fortune for an operation, and yet be justified. The problem arises when you are a teacher. More often than not, the job of a teacher is underrated.

Let us first scrutinize what exactly is the job of a teacher, and then comment on the justification of a teacher's salary. A teacher is not just a person who teaches how to solve a math problem, or one who teaches that bases neutralise the acids to make salts. A teacher is a second parent to a child or a student. If we look closely, a student spends as much of their day hours with teachers as he/she spends with the parents.

It is safe to say that teachers play an equivalent role in shaping a child's personality as his/her parents, in addition to teaching the subjects in question. Even if we do not speak philosophically, a teacher is a person who helps shape a child's future by providing the student with the right knowledge and skill set at the school level. Shaping someone's life for good should be considered as important as saving someone's life. Unfortunately, this is not how teachers are looked upon. Teaching is generally considered as a rather ordinary job as compared to many other jobs which are considered more sophisticated or complex, such as the job of an engineer, or a physicist. Dealing with children and shaping their personalities for good on a daily basis is anything but ordinary.

According to a research, an entry-level high school teacher usually earns an average total compensation of Rs 248000, while a high school teacher with mid-career experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of Rs 345000. The average annual salary of a high school teacher is more in Maharashtra in comparison to other cities of India. However, the difference between the average income of a teacher in India and other countries is appalling.

When we undervalue a profession, it justifies the fact that people in that profession are often underpaid. It then becomes an unwritten law, and teachers are left with no choice but to settle for less. Teachers in India should be given more credit and remuneration for what they do on a daily basis, than what they are being offered at the moment.

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