【立法會議題】小學教師晉升為校長的要求及該兩類人員的薪酬水平 (The requirements for primary school teachers to be promoted to principals and pay levels of the two types of personnel) ....!
Following is a question by the Hon Ip Kin-yuen and a written reply by the Acting Secretary for Education, Mr Kevin Yeung, in the Legislative Council today (June 24):
Some members of the education sector have pointed out that at present, the pay levels for principals and graduate teachers in government and aided primary schools are lower than those for their counterparts in government and aided secondary schools. For instance, while a primary school principal's pay points are Points 35 to 41 on the Master Pay Scale (the same applies below), those for a secondary school principal are Points 40 to 49; the starting pay points for a Headmaster/Headmistress I and a Headmaster/Headmistress II of primary schools (Points 38 and 35 respectively) are at roughly the same level as the starting pay point (Point 34) for a Senior Graduate Master/Mistress of secondary schools. Furthermore, the maximum pay point for an Assistant Primary School Master/Mistress (APSM) is Point 29, but that for a Graduate Master/Mistress of secondary schools is Point 33. On the other hand, the requirements for promotion of a primary school teacher to a principal are stricter than those for promotion of a secondary school teacher to a principal. For instance, a primary school teacher is required to have one year's acting appointment before being substantively promoted to a primary school principal. However, there is no such a requirement for secondary schools. These members of the education sector consider that the authorities should raise the pay levels for principals and APSMs in primary schools, and review the requirements for promotion of primary school teachers to principals. In this connection, will the Government inform this Council:
(1) of the reasons why graduate teachers in government and aided primary schools are paid less than their counterparts in secondary schools; whether the authorities conducted any review last year to examine if such differences had constituted an unfair situation; if they did, of the details; if not, the reasons for that;
(2) whether the authorities will review the pay levels for primary school principals and APSMs in the coming year; if they will, of the details, work schedule and estimated additional expenditure to be incurred; if not, the reasons for that;
(3) of the differences and similarities between the current requirements for promotion of primary school teachers to principals and those for their counterparts in secondary schools, as well as the reasons for such differences; whether the authorities conducted any review 1ast year to examine if such differences had constituted an unfair situation; if they did, of the details; if not, the reasons for that; and
(4) whether the authorities will review the requirements for promotion of primary school teachers to principals in the coming year; if they will, of the details and work schedule; if not, the reasons for that?
(1) and (2) The grades and ranks of primary and secondary school teachers are determined with due regard to various factors, such as entry requirements, academic qualifications, length of service and duties. Since the curriculums, modes of teaching and learning, and student support and development needs of primary and secondary schools are different, the work nature, responsibilities and grade structures of principals and teachers of the two types of schools are not the same. Hence, it is not appropriate to make a direct comparison of their pay levels.
When considering whether the pay levels of individual teaching grades/ranks should be adjusted, apart from taking into account objective factors such as entry requirements, academic qualifications and length of service, the Education Bureau (EDB) also considers other relevant factors, such as the implication for other civil service grades/ranks with similar qualification requirements, recruitment situation of relevant grades/ranks, the overall financial position of the Government and its affordability. The EDB has to balance the demands and concerns of various stakeholders prudently and make good use of resources in formulating and implementing practicable education policies as appropriate. Having considered the current situation, the Government has no plan to review the pay levels of primary school principals and Assistant Primary School Master/Mistress at this stage.
(3) and (4) Currently, aspiring principal candidates of public sector primary and secondary schools must have a degree from a local university or equivalent qualifications, possess teacher training qualifications and attain the Certification for Principalship. Given the difference between primary and secondary schools in terms of their curriculums and operation, such as the difference in the complexity of the public examination system which their students have to go through, the variety of curriculum arrangement and the attention to students' diverse needs for their exit pathways, it is not appropriate to make a direct comparison of the work nature and duties of primary and secondary school teachers. Moreover, various teaching grades have undergone different development processes. Hence, the current requirements on qualifications and length of service for promotion of primary and secondary school teachers to principals are specific to the varying circumstances of individual grades.
Over the past few years, the Government has responded actively to the demands of the sector and implemented a number of measures to enhance the remuneration of primary school principals and teachers. These measures include establishing the deputy head rank, creating senior teacher posts of English, enhancing the ratio of graduate teacher posts, providing permanent teaching posts in place of the Specialised Teaching Support Grant, and converting the Primary School Curriculum Leader post to a permanent one. The current teaching grade structure, which is determined after a number of factors have been considered and balanced, is operating smoothly with due regard to the development features of various ranks. The EDB has no plan to review the requirements for promotion of primary school teachers to principals at this stage.
Ends/Wednesday, June 24, 2015 Issued at HKT 11:50