No monopoly on poor pay

28th February 2003 at 00:00
I read with interest the report on teachers' salaries (TES, February 14).

Having worked in a large secondary for more than 14 years I have every sympathy with teachers, and know that most deserve every penny.

However, some thought should also be given to people like me: the army of non-teaching professionals working in schools.

I am a chartered librarian, with a degree in addition to my professional qualification and more than 30 years' experience in public, special, college and school libraries. My job involves supervision of sixth-form students all day, every day, promoting reading development, supporting teachers in as many ways as I can.

At lunch times I am solely responsible for up to 80 pupils at a time - disciplining them, maintaining a safe environment, helping them to find the information they need for homework, or just "a good book to read".

I have a team of 20 pupil assistants, who are all trained and supervised by me as they gain useful skills for their future lives.

Then there is controlling a budget, selecting and maintaining appropriate stock and caring for the fabric of the library building and so on. Like teachers my day begins early; there is usually a queue outside the library when I arrive just after 8am. It ends around 5pm, or later if I am involved in out-of-school activities. For this I receive less than pound;20,000 a year, which my local authority found, during a general salary review recently, to be rather high.

I would like to retire this year, at 60, but I may have to work for several years yet to save for a reasonable pension.

I manage because we don't have a mortgage on our house, I walk to work and holidays consist of a few days in our old caravan on a friend's farm.

Please don't forget that there are other people who deserve a pay rise, but are not on teachers' salary scales.

Name and address supplied

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now