Teacher salaries Dubai UAE

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Teacher salaries Dubai UAE

Postby shawarma » 03 Dec 2007, 13:17

Related topics...
GEMs schools fee increase
Profit vs non-profit schools in Dubai UAE

Gulf News article from 12 June 2006. Some schools have increased teacher salaries since then but probably not by much. Note too that the top end of the salary ranges (see end of article) are likely to be for administrators and management, it would be very rare or unheard of for a classroom teacher to be earning more than 20,000 dhs per month. At least in 2006/2007. The bottom end of the range for private schools is rather optimistic also, there are US/UK curriculum schools which pay less than the minimum stated - 5000 dhs per month is not uncommon.

Many Indian, Pakistani, Filipino, Arabic schools pay as little as AED 1000-2000 per month.

UAE school fee ranges appear to be inaccurate. Several schools have yearly fees up to 50,000 dhs per student.

Teacher, why is your salary so low?
By Sunita Menon and Wafa Issa, Staff Reporters

Several private schools have just increased their tuition fees, blaming this on a rising cost of living, including spiralling rents. At the same time, the teachers continue to be poorly paid, many struggling to just make ends meet. The result: An increasingly commercialised education system that satisfies neither the student, parent nor the teacher. What does the Ministry of Education think about this?

P.G., an Asian schoolteacher, earns Dh2,200. Seven years ago she received Dh1,400 a month. Her basic salary was raised after the Ministry of Education stipulated a minimum of Dh2,000 for teachers.

"In this last seven years I had received a salary raise only twice - Dh125 and Dh65. But the basic remained the same," she said.P.G. said the management of the school has stopped providing an air ticket every two years.

"When we enquired about the matter the school management told us that we would be able to meet our travel expenses as the ministry has brought up the minimum wage to Dh2,000." She said the school where she teaches has announced an increase of 15 per cent in tuition fees.

'A cover-up'

"The whole talk given by the school management on improving teacher salaries is a cover-up to hike the fees. Our salaries remain the same. Private schools are today running a profit-making business," she said.

Similar is the case of A.F., an Arab teacher who earns Dh2,300. She says that in the last ten years she received a total of Dh300 in salary raises. "Female teachers are earning less than their male counterparts. I am not sure why. My husband is also earning a middle income salary.

"I have four children and with the ongoing fee increase it has become imperative for teachers in my situation to take private tuitions and earn additional income. The ministry should be more involved in determining the salaries of teachers in private schools," she said.

Spiralling costs

R.J., who works as an administrator in an Arab school, said her salary is Dh2,000. "The cost of living is skyrocketing but the salary remains the same.

It does not reflect inflation. I am married. We pay Dh2,500 monthly for a flat in Sharjah. We have a lot of debts. How are we going to manage when the rents increase, the fee increases and the even the cost of basic things like milk and tea has gone up while the salaries are not improving? The ministry should issue a new level for minimum wages of teachers," she said.

Taking advantage

A senior official from the Private Education Zone in Dubai said that many schools are taking advantage of the Dh2,000 minimum wage that has been stipulated by the Ministry of Education despite their ability to provide a much better pay package for their teachers.

According to a senior official from the Ministry of Education about 22 schools have applied for fee increases. The range of increases requested by the schools is 15 to 20 per cent. As per federal law tuition fees can be raised only every three years.

Juma Al Salami, Undersecretary in the Ministry of Education, said the number of schools that increase their fees for the next academic year will probably go up to 40 nationwide.

"But schools can apply for an earlier increase if they have provided new services in the school," said Mona Lootah, head of the private education zone.


But she believes that the fee hike should go hand in hand with an increase in teacher salaries. "The minimum wage for teachers should be raised to Dh5,000," she said.

According to her, schools should look at the increase in teacher salaries as an investment rather than a cost.

"By paying better salaries to teachers the schools will improve the quality of teaching and the services provided. But the problem we face is that complaints about salaries come forward only when the teacher decides to resign or is fired. We always ask the teacher to inform us from the beginning so we can intervene and change their situation," said Mona.

Salamah Al Bati and Noaima Al Hashemi, administrators in the zone, said the 20 per cent fee increase imposed by some schools is not reflected in teacher salaries.

Catch 22

School principals took a different stand, saying that they are in a Catch 22 situation. On one hand they have to maintain the quality of education while on the other they are subjected to rising rents and increased costs of living.

Mohammad Keenan, principal of the Oxford School, said: "We don't want to overburden the parents, but at the same time the running costs are getting higher.

"In the school's 18 years we have raised our fees five times. We will have a fee increase of 5 per cent for the next academic year," he said.

Keenan called the fee hike justifiable if it is put in the context of inflation. "Of course we need to make a profit, but it should not be the ultimate objective," he said.

A few principals feel that schools should be allowed to raise fees annually instead of every three years. This would help the education provider as well as the customer to budget properly.

Fewer teachers

Hugh McPherson, chief operating officer of GEMS Schools, said there are numerous factors that should be borne in mind when talking about fee increases and teacher salaries.

The group manages 22 international and Asian schools across the UAE and has asked for a 20 per cent fee increase for some schools.

"We have to be conscious of the market, but having said that there are certain dynamics that are global in this context. Although it seems strange to talk about it in that way, there is a world shortage of teachers, for example. What we are seeing is a common characteristic that is having an impact in many locations in that respect and the UAE is only one of them.

"Today you have fewer people going to universities to train to be teachers. That is one impact. The second impact is that as a result of that and the growing awareness of the need to improve education continuously you have teacher salaries being reviewed by government and private providers with a trend upwards. Obviously that is intended to attract people to this profession at the first entry point when they come out of university and at schools when they are choosing their careers. So we want to make teaching a popular profession again."


McPherson said there is also a reluctance by teachers who are state employees to give up the excellent pension packages and security tenure provided in their respective countries and look for employment overseas.

"This stream of expatriates is perhaps not as fertile as it used to be in terms of numbers and from our perspective we have to be conscious of that, if for example we are going to India to recruit staff for our Asian schools.

"We have to be competitive. We have to be able to offer them decent standards of living and career development opportunities that will not encourage them to leave. In addition you have the largest percentage of teachers who are state employees. They enjoy pensions and security tenure. The UK, US and India are the same in that respect. Those are the people who are encouraged to come out of their respective countries and work."

He said that the cost increase in Dubai is a challenge. "As you have seen we have rent increases in triple digits. That will have an impact. This is challenging as we have to come up with a sustainable formula to maintain the quality of education and for that what we are trying to do is develop partnerships, putting a lot of thought and engaging lots of people on how we can provide education for, say, the next ten years," he said.

Annual hikes

The chairman of the Gulf Model High School, advocate A. Najeeth, also feels that fee hikes should be annual.

"The hike should be strictly regulated by the ministry and should be of a small per cent. I am running an Asian school and as per my information 40 schools are in dire financial need," he said.

The school recently granted a 10 per cent increase in teacher salaries. "It might seek a nominal fee increase in the next academic year," he said.

Principal Nobogh Naseer of the Al Mawakeb School admitted that teacher salaries in the Arab world are at an all-time low.

"In my school nobody complains about their wages. But we need to improve the teachers' situation. One of the main reasons for the fee increase is to increase the salaries of our teachers. The rent and inflation make it iimpossible for teachers to live comfortably," he said.

What an official says: Juma Al Salami, Undersecretary in the Ministry of Education, said: "I personally don't agree with the Dh2,000 minimum wage. It undermines the teaching profession in the UAE. In my opinion it is ridiculous. You cannot pay a teacher as little as Dh2,000 and expect them to be good teachers. After all, teachers are not superhuman or creatures from Mars.

"Several times there has been a suggestion to have an ideal type of contract in which the rights of the teachers as well as the school managements are taken into consideration. The minimum wage should be set according to the GDP and inflation in living costs."

The undersecretary said that there are serious intentions of bringing about a change in the article of the by-law of minimum wages.

"It is considered an obstacle to the Emiratisation of some jobs in private schools. The minister is giving serious attention to this subject. Greater emphasis is given to the well-being of teachers."

Monthly salaries in government schools - Over 520,000 teachers across the UAE.

UAE national average
Not married Dh9,000 (extra benefits Dh1,300-Dh1,600)
Married Dh7,000 to Dh16,000.
Expatriate Dh5,370
Source: The Ministry of Education

Private school teachers' monthly salary range
British Curriculum Dh9,000 - Dh25,000
American Curriculum Dh7,000 - Dh20,000
Asian Curriculum Dh1,700 - Dh5,000
Ministry Curriculum Dh2,000 - Dh6,000
Source: The Ministry of Education

Annual fees
Arabic schools Dh2,875 - Dh26,000
International schools Dh7,800 - Dh33,000
Asian schools Dh2,200 - Dh5,520
Source: Private schools
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Teacher salaries Dubai UAE

Postby shawarma » 03 Dec 2007, 13:18

An older article from the Khaleej Times (28 Aug 2002) but not completely irrelevant in 2007. Schools are quick to increase fees, if they can, and slow to increase teacher salaries...

Many schools fail to give teachers ministry salary

By Meraj Rizvi and Tarek Fleihan

THE Ministry of Education and Youth's directive fixing Dh2,000 as the basic salary for teachers in all private schools in the UAE, may trigger malpractices in a number of small and medium-sized schools, which in turn is likely to have a cascading effect on big schools.

Managements of several private schools catering to low and middle income families have expressed concern over and reservations about the malpractices that they feel they have to resort to, to meet the ministry's basic salary stipulation, outlined in its by-laws issued last year.

"We are compelled to draw up two agreements with our teachers. One is for official use stating a hiked basic salary of Dh2,000, as stipulated by the ministry. Another agreement is an internal one between the school and the teacher outlining the actual salary which is considerably lower than Dh2,000," said a principal of an Asian private school in Sharjah.

"The school opened in 1993 in Sharjah and currently has around 200 students, out of which a majority are from low-income Asian families. As a result, it is difficult to raise the fees to meet the increasing salary expenses of the teachers," the principal said.

He disclosed that the school had made several representations to the ministry to allow them to continue with a lower salary structure for their teachers. "But, the feedback is negative and I am forced to resort to misrepresentation of the salary figure on the labour agreement which is to be furnished to the ministry," said the principal expressing his helplessness on behalf of the teachers.

A private school in Dubai, which caters to over 2,000 Asian students, said it is also being compelled to resort to giving false salary figures.

An official of this school stated that the ministry was not interested in how they managed to raise their teachers' salaries, but at the end of the month the salary sheet submitted to the authorities should reflect the implementation of the basic salary criteria of Dh2,000.

"We know it is wrong, but, we are left with little choice since our fee structure is not enough to meet the huge infrastructural cost. As far as the hike in fees is concerned, our request for a 10 per cent increase was turned down recently by the ministry," the official said, justifying the two agreements with teachers.

Dubai's Our Own English High School principal G. Madhav Rao refused to comment on the subject, but mentioned that the Dh2,000 salary requisite for teachers will have a cascading effect on big schools. "Although we cater to over 8,500 students, when the expenses go up, it will lead to problems," he said.

Shobha Mohan, Vice-Principal of Indian School Ajman, expressed concern over the salary hike of teachers. She pointed out that the school would implement it from next month and to meet the increasing expenses, it wouldl be forced to revise its fee structure. "We have already applied to the ministry to allow us to raise our tuition fees by 20 per cent," she pointed out.

Ministry to ensure transparency: The Ministry of Education and Youth, when contacted, reiterated its stand that the Dh2,000 basic salary for teachers would be enforced in all schools. A source at the ministry said: "The Private Educational Department is not attesting the renewal of teachers' labour contracts, if the basic salary stated in it is less than Dh2,000."

The source revealed tht the Private Educational Department has been receiving complaints from teachers who have been abused by their schools. "However, the department is unable to guarantee the legal rights of these teachers who have, along with the labour contract, signed papers waiving their financial rights."

But, he assured the department is willing to take legal action to control these malpractices and is drawing up plans to ensure the transparency of the entire process. He denied that the ministry had made it mandatory for all schools to transfer the teachers' salary to their respective bank accounts to make the entire system more transparent. As of now, no such instructions have been issued to schools, he said.
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Re: Teacher salaries Dubai UAE

Postby nav » 08 Oct 2010, 15:01

In INDIA the standard of living has increased very much. The cost of living can be compared to that of advanced countries.
In professional colleges like ENGINEERING the salary of lecturer is about 45,000 INR per month. The salary of Asoociate Professor is above 80,000 INR per month. and salary of Professor is more than one lakh per month INR.
The question is why a person getting this much salary will go to GULF Countries. In previous old days the salary offered by gulf countries was about 10 times that in INDIA.
It is high time the gulf countries recognize INDIA as a high cost of living country or advace country. Hence it should offer suffeciantly high salary to INDIAN people if Gulf Countries want to attract Academecians from INDIA.

with regards

Re: Teacher salaries Dubai UAE

Postby shikshak » 22 Feb 2011, 19:57

KHDA has come in to play to ensure good standards of teaching and quality education in schools but sadly there is no body to ensure that teachers are paid well... quality never comes cheap! What private schools pay to teachers is sort of comparable to some less educated people's salaries in offices... sad but true.. and then as parents we expect that since we are paying the school a good hefty fee they will ensure that every aspect is take care of which is rarely the case. My request to schools is to please start addressing this issue else the number of teachers leaving school jobs every year will keep rising and our children will suffer getting not so quality education even after spending large sum of money.

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