Salaries with a pinch of salt

9th February 2001 at 00:00
Your annual analysis of principals' pay is always welcome in the interests of ensuring openness in public-sector finance and I, for one, applaud the principle. However, I would question the method used for presenting this information, as I believe that the figures are misleading.

In my case, as principal of Park College in Eastbourne, my salary was in fact pound;58,376 gross, which in net terms is equal to pound;36,232 per annum and not pound;71,000 as shown in your table.

I uderstand that it is simpler for you to use salaries plus on-costs, but would question whether this is clear to the vast majority of your readers. For example, do you know what your salary is including pension on-costs? In fact, I wonder if any member of the teaching profession or the public will be aware of this figure in relation to their own salary. Therefore, I would question why it is used in this context.

Phil Frier Principal, Park College Eastbourne

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