The World Teachers’ Day on October 5 is a day for countries to honor their teachers and the important role they play in raising the future generations. Social and economic development and much more depend on how the society prepares its most important asset, its children, to lead the country.
Having access to a decent education is what creates a more advanced and just society for all, including empowering women and emancipating them from being treated as second class citizens. This is where the role of the teachers proves pivotal. But teachers need job security and a decent pay to provide the next generations with such education.
Unfortunately, in an Iran under the mullahs’ rule the living conditions for teachers, over 50% of them women, is far below acceptable standards. Going unpaid for months, injustice in the adjustment of their wages with the living costs, and having no medical insurance are amongst the issues that make life difficult for and consume the energies of Iranian teachers. Instead of providing a good education, teachers in Iran are preoccupied by making their ends meet.
This is in stark contrast to developed countries like Sweden where teachers have some of the highest paying jobs and are among the most educated.
According to the date compiled from the Iranian state media, the minimum monthly expenses for a family of four in April 2019 was 8 million tomans ($700). The amount they had to spend for their food and only for 18 essential goods at the common price in the cities, was 2,228,000 tomans ($194) in April 2019, while the minimum wage is 1,517,000 tomans ($132). Meanwhile a teacher’s average monthly salary is 3,250,000 tomans ($284) and a retired teacher receives 1,500,000 tomans ($131). But most teachers have temporary contracts which brings down their wages to under one million tomans ($87).