However, just how much are they earning for a job with such importance?
Did you know that according to the Ministry of Education (MOE), entry level teachers with diploma qualifications, have a starting salary from as low as RM1698 per month? Teachers of this level are entitled to an annual raise of RM145 every year.
If the same diploma-level teacher does not get any promotions or other additional allowances, she will have to work at least 4 years to earn a salary that is above the National Poverty Line (RM2208). She will then require 4 years of experience under her belt in order to qualify for the next level of salary grading called DG32 where the cap is at RM6,077.
The table below from the Ministry of Education (MOE) shows the various salary grading levels for teachers in Malaysia.
Source: Ministry of Education
For teachers with higher entry level qualifications (DG32 – DG38), such as a Bachelor Degree in Education, Masters, or even a PhD, their entry level salaries are well above the National Poverty Line. The Education career path is a fluid one. One can choose to put in the years and gain promotions by years of experience or they can opt for pursuing higher levels of education before starting off their career and have a higher starting salary.
Do you think teachers in Malaysia are paid well?
Note: This is a preliminary finding and we hope to dive deeper and explore if teachers in Malaysia are adequately compensated compared to teachers in other Asian countries. Stay tuned! If you’re a teacher and want to share your stories and insights, please get in touch with us.