Living in the gender gap

21st February 2003 at 00:00
I WAS not at all surprised to read that female teachers are on average paid less than their male colleagues (TES, February 7).

I recently left a school where I taught as a newly-qualified teacher and was paid on the bottom rung of the qualified teachers' pay scale.

I also happen to be a qualified and experienced nurse, which was directly relevant to my teaching subject. I asked for "experience points" but was rejected.

I was replaced by an acquaintance of mine, also a nurse, but more importantly, not a qualified teacher and with little experience of teaching. He tells me he is to be paid almost pound;3,000 more than I was on the unqualified teachers' scale.

Did I qualify in vain? Or as the article suggests, are female teachers just poor at negotiating their starting rate?

Not an encouraging start to my teaching career!

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