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finland teacher

Teachers in most countries around the world make less than the average cost of goods and services in their country.
AP Photo/Stephan Savoia


  • Most teachers across the world get paid less than the local average cost of goods and services, according to a new report from UK-based educator job site Teaching Abroad.
  • Teaching Abroad used 106 data sources to find teacher salaries in 100 countries, and then compared it to the per capita GDP (PPP), a measure of the total local cost of goods and services.
  • China and the Ivory Coast pay teachers the highest relative to GDP, and educators in 93% of countries make less than the local per capita GDP.
  • Visit Business Insider’s home page for more stories.

Teachers in the US recently spoke out against low pay — and the country’s educators aren’t alone.

Globally, K-12 teachers make 48% below the local average cost of goods and services, according to a new report from UK-based hiring firm Teaching Abroad.

Teaching Abroad analyzed 106 external sources to find local teacher salaries in 100 countries. It then converted those figures into dollars and compared it to the gross domestic product per capita at purchasing power parity, or GDP (PPP). That measure is used by economists to estimate the total level of goods and services per person produced by a national economy, and provides a good proxy for the overall cost of living in a country.

Ninety-three percent of teachers make below a country’s local average price of goods and services, according to the study, meaning even teachers in the best-paying countries still earn less than an average share of the national economy.

Here are 20 countries that pay teachers the best when compared to the cost of living.

20. Teachers in Iceland earn salaries 14% lower than the GDP per capita.

teacher iceland


AP Photo/David Keyton


Average teacher salary (USD): $47,283

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $7,469

19. Teachers in the US earn salaries 14% lower than the GDP per capita.

teacher first day of school


Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post via Getty Images


Average teacher salary (USD): $53,609

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $8,908

18. Teachers in Costa Rica earn salaries 13% lower than the GDP per capita.

costa rica schools


AP Photo/Kent Gilbert


Average teacher salary (USD): $15,311

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $2,336

17. Teachers in France earn salaries 12% lower than the GDP per capita.

teacher france


AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti


Average teacher salary (USD):  $39,912

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $5,689

16. Teachers in Ecuador earn salaries 11% lower than the GDP per capita.

teacher ecuador


AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa


Average teacher salary (USD): $10,608

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $1,257

15. Teachers in Canada earn salaries 10% lower than the GDP per capita.

schools in canada


Reuters


Average teacher salary (USD): $4,5181

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $4,754

14. Teachers in Iraq earn salaries 9% lower than the GDP per capita.

iraq school


REUTERS/Khalid al-Mousily


Average teacher salary (USD):  $15,325

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $1,601

13. Teachers in Australia earn salaries 9% lower than the GDP per capita.

australia teacher


AP Photo/Rick Rycroft


Average teacher salary (USD):  $47,564

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $4,798

12. Teachers in Spain earn salaries 9% lower than the GDP per capita.

spain school


AP Photo/Manu Fernandez


Average teacher salary (USD):  $36,730

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $3,641

11. Teachers in Vietnam earn salaries 8% lower than the GDP per capita.

vietnam school


AP Photo/Maika Elan


Average teacher salary (USD): $6,816

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $562

10. Teachers in Finland earn salaries 8% lower than the GDP per capita.

finland teacher


AP Photo/Stephan Savoia


Average teacher salary (USD): $ 42,607

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $3,952

9. Teachers in Mexico earn salaries 8% lower than the GDP per capita.

mexico elementary school


AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd


Average teacher salary (USD): $18,922

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $ 1,723

8. Teachers in New Zealand earn salaries 7% lower than the GDP per capita.

new zealand


REUTERS/Nigel Marple


Average teacher salary (USD): $37,586

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $2,680

7. Teachers in South Africa earn salaries 2% lower than the GDP per capita.

South Africa schools


AP Photo/Denis Farrell


Average teacher salary (USD): $13,618

How much less teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $222

6. Teachers in Turkmenistan earn salaries 0% higher than the GDP per capita.

Turkmenistan


MUSTAFA OZER/AFP via Getty Images


Average teacher salary (USD): $19,572

How much more teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $46

5. Teachers in Germany earn salaries 1% higher than the GDP per capita.

german teacher


AP Photo/Martin Meissner)


Average teacher salary (USD):  $53,373

How much more teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $477

4. Teachers in Switzerland earn salaries 7% higher than the GDP per capita.

switzerland teacher


AP Photo/KEYSTONE/Arno Balzarini


Average teacher salary (USD):  $69,471

How much more teachers make compared to GDP (PPP):  $4,484

3. Teachers in Morocco earn salaries 13% higher than the GDP per capita.

morocco school


AP Photo/Mosa’ab Elshamy


Average teacher salary (USD): $10,092

How much more teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $1,156

2. Teachers in China earn salaries 44% higher than the GDP per capita.

china teacher


AP Photo/Greg Baker


Average teacher salary (USD): $26,177

How much more teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $8,057

1. Teachers in Côte d’Ivoire earn salaries 62% higher than the GDP per capita.

ivory coast


AP


Average teacher salary (USD): $6,723

How much more teachers make compared to GDP (PPP): $2,568

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