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Too likely to hang around for the pension?

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by David Getling, Nov 4, 2011.

  1. David Getling

    David Getling Lead commenter

    A student of mine, whose mum works at an international school, told me that she had said that such schools were less inclined to take older teachers because if they hung on to retirement then the school would have to cop for the pension. This is not the first time I've heard this. In regard to UK independent schools, a UK teacher told me exactly the same thing about 6 months ago.

    What do others think? Is there any truth to this (at least, in western European private schools)?

    Wouldn't it be ironic for me if the schools who [after seeing my CV] didn't think I had no staying power were afraid I'd stay too long.
     
  2. David Getling

    David Getling Lead commenter

    A student of mine, whose mum works at an international school, told me that she had said that such schools were less inclined to take older teachers because if they hung on to retirement then the school would have to cop for the pension. This is not the first time I've heard this. In regard to UK independent schools, a UK teacher told me exactly the same thing about 6 months ago.

    What do others think? Is there any truth to this (at least, in western European private schools)?

    Wouldn't it be ironic for me if the schools who [after seeing my CV] didn't think I had no staying power were afraid I'd stay too long.
     
  3. SMT dude

    SMT dude New commenter

    David I'm not trying to be a smart-aleck for once, I genuinely don't understand.
    We've had colleagues retire at the end of each of the past five years, and while the school has to help with the bureaucracy (often of two or more countries), it hasn't incurred extra costs. We certify that the person is of the right age and has done x years of service with us, and they have to obtain certification of previous years of pensionable service elsewhere - in most cases they've made contributions here and in the UK.
    Once that's all wrapped up, we hold a heartwarming party for them, shower them with farewell presents (we give very generous travel vouchers to long-serving retirees so they can have that trip-of-a-lifetime before their first stroke or hip replacement), and then they shuffle off down Cemetery Road.
    Example, a lady did the last eight brilliant years of her career with us, paying in to the local pension. She also had twenty-odd years with the TP, and a ten-year gap when she worked in a high-income no-tax no-pension country and put cash into a private plan.
    So now, ruminating freely among verdant pastures, the yoke and harness forever removed from her shoulders, she receives a monthly payment from the UK, another from Ruritana, and a third from Global Capitalism Inc. She seems to be doing quite nicely, but if things turn ugly for her in the future, it won't be the school's problem.
    The retirement procedure is partly tense, partly boring, but entirely cost-free, or so I have fondly thought. Am I missing something? Some compelling economic reason to discriminate against the over-fifties (a group to which I belong myself) ?
     
  4. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    To the best of my knowledge, most schools in the Middle East do not pay any pension contributions.
     
  5. David Getling

    David Getling Lead commenter

    SMT, I think Hippo might be confirming that funding pensions works differently for independent schools in the UK and some of western Europe. I honestly don't know, which is why I'm asking. I got exactly the same comments from two very different sources.

    I'll be very happy to be told that this is a load of tosh. I probably lose enough jobs with having this piled on top. And if it is true I might need to start looking further afield than just English, French and German speaking countries - or think even more seriously about starting my own business.
     
  6. miketribe

    miketribe Established commenter

    She Who Must Be Obeyed retired in September. The school held a farewell dinner for her but that was the limit of their effort. She did all the paperwork herself or with the help of a friend. I also hope to move on to a well-deserved retirement with in the next three years -- although with the Partido Popular slated to win the elections on November 20th, maybe not. The school pays exactly the same contributions to Seguridad Social for me as they do for a 20-something whippersnapper fresh out from the American Colonies. Like SMTDude, I can't quite grasp what you're getting at... I'd really like the generous travel vouchers, though...
     
  7. SMT dude

    SMT dude New commenter

    Yes, in the Middle and far Easts, by and large, there is little income tax and no compulsory employer's or employee's contribution to a state pension system. Thus, as many a gleeeful teacher in those regions has informed us, you have more disposable income and more chance to save.
    But save you must, and in a manner that will make provision for your future. You can trust your surplus to any number of private pension and investment funds, you can play the local casino or ForEx rates, you can buy nuggets of gold or slum properties back in the UK. Just don't blow it all, is all.
    In most of Europe, however, bossy old Nanny State does your saving for you, by taking monthly money from you and your employer. This is not, as some still believe, kept in a treasure chest with your name on it - the government pays it straight out to today's Darby & Joans, and your pension will one day be paid by the younger generation. As everyone knows, the arithmetic of this little operation is not working out in any way that bodes well for our future.
    Another good reason to teach our students as well as possible - if the little boogers end up as unproductive adults, we oldsters will starve our butts off in freezing rooms.
    Anyway to return to the original post, this school, in the EU, does 'cop the pension' as Davy put it - but it does so month in, month out, for all its employees of whatever age. So no inducement to discriminate against those who are ripe in years.
     

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