My country, Venezuela, has been in a deep crisis since the last decade. Everybody knows. However, who is responsible? The answer differs depending on people’s political views: according to people from the left, the culprit is the economic sanctions imposed by the “enemies of the socialist government.” According to the more centered people, the regime has put in place a bad program of government and corruption. Above all, the basic problem of this nation and many underdeveloped countries in the last 50 years still had been the basic education, especially of the poorest at starting levels.
Let’s see the Global Teacher Status (GTS) 2018 of the Varkey Foundation as a guide of the education in the world. The report basically tries to understand how teachers are respected comparing with other professions using 35 nations from one of the less wealthy examples like Ghana in Africa until the richest and developed like the United States of America.
The ranking is based mainly on the rewards to the teachers, compared with other professions and the respect by the alumni, given a result in the Teacher Status Index from 0 to 100 values. Results gave almost the top 100 to China and Malaysia, a meager 40 to the USA and Japan, and Brazil together with Israel reaching 0. But, is this the real truth? Perhaps there are several imprecisions within these investigations; however, development of each nation is almost well correlated with the report.
Venezuela does not appear in the GTS but a simple estimation can be inferred and it is devastating. Just considering the account wages of a teacher, the best rewarded are in Switzerland with 77.471 USD a year. The average is around 12.000 USD. One of the less rewarded teachers is in Egypt with around 5.000 USD yearly. In my country a public-school teacher earn around 180 USD for ten months of hard work but the average needed for living in a year for a family of four members is 3.000 USD.
Besides, these results are combined with the behavior of the average pupils in the classroom. Let’s focus on the Americas from Canada to Argentina. All these teachers have to deal with annoying students especially in high school, both public and private institutions. On the contrary, in Japan, there is a system of respect for the elders. This ranked order permits to pay attention at different levels inside the society; this is specially marked at the schools where teachers attend a very quiet class, kept clean by the alumnus and cover the odd faults by the professors.
In Venezuela to maintain the discipline in class the teacher could confront an ultra-protective children education law (LOPNA) which will be driven to even the close of an institution if a teacher is accused of mistreating a pupil when in general the teacher is the one offended. I am not saying that we should avoid the protection of children and teenagers; I am saying that to respect the teacher´s authority, classroom peace and the just reward of the teachers at a more stimulating salary.