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Teachers and school leaders

in 2013/14, there were 41 034 full-time equivalent teachers and academic personnel in service (see Table 1.1) of which the great majority were women. This represents a drop of approximately 9% from 2005/6. The Latvian government manages the supply of new teachers by forecasting the demand for newly qualified teachers and by setting state-funded study places for teacher students on a yearly basis, taking into consideration budget restraints.

The number of teacher students has decreased during the last decade, but not as quickly as the decline in student numbers.

Latvia has an ageing educational workforce. in 2012, 35% of education staff at the primary level and 45% at the lower and upper secondary level were over 50 (Eurostat, 2014a). The country is unlikely to be faced with drastic shortages of teachers and academic staff, however, due to the projected decline in student numbers in the coming years.

Working in education is generally not considered an attractive career option in Latvia and the sector consequently struggles to attract young talent. salaries are low and the career structure is flat. The salary of a lower secondary teacher who has been in service for 15 years amounts to just 52% of GDP per capita (corrected for differences in purchasing power parities) while their peers in oECD countries, with similar experience, receive on average 124% of GDP per capita (oECD, 2013a). Further, while teachers and academic staff are considered to be part of the civil service in most oECD countries, this is not the case in Latvia.

The Latvian government has therefore made “raising motivation and professional capacity of teachers and academic personnel” a priority (MoEs, 2014). several measures have been taken recently to help achieve this objective including the piloting of a new teacher remuneration system and the implementation of a teacher appraisal system, which is described in Chapter 3.

 
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