By the numbers - Teachers' salaries

5th October 2012 at 01:00

Teachers in England are relatively well paid when compared with school staff in other developed countries, a study has revealed.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) compared salaries in 36 countries and found that annual wages for experienced primary and secondary teachers in England were higher than the OECD average.

The average salary for a primary teacher after 15 years of work is #163;28,000 ($44,145), while the OECD average is #163;23,800 ($37,603). The corresponding average salary for secondary teachers in England is also #163;28,000 ($44,145), but #163;25,000 ($39,401) elsewhere. Teachers' salaries in England are 99 per cent of the country's full-time average, whereas teachers across the OECD nations earn 82 per cent of the national wage on average.

But England has a relatively flat wage structure compared with some countries: teachers' pay is 46 per cent higher at the top of the scale than at the bottom, compared with an average potential pay rise across OECD nations of 58 per cent.

Change in primary teachers' wages across their careers

Starting and top-of-scale salaries (in US dollars)






















Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today