Sanni Grahn-Laasonen (NCP), the Minister of Education, has urged municipalities in the capital region to come clean about whether or not they have agreed to keep the wages of nursery school teachers in check.
Grahn-Laasonen told Uusi Suomi on Wednesday that the matter must be investigated thoroughly.
YLE on Monday reported that Espoo, Helsinki and Vantaa have a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ not to compete against each other by offering higher wages to competent nursery school teachers. The Trade Union for Education (OAJ) expressed its dismay with the alleged arrangement, describing it as a “cartel” formed by the municipalities.
Both OAJ and Grahn-Laasonen also demanded that the veracity of the claims be investigated by Local Government Employers (KT).
“We aren’t involved with the wages, but I believe it’s important that the stakeholders look into the issue thoroughly and that the labour market organisations hold talks also with a view to making sure that early-childhood education is appreciated. The municipalities have to tell the truth here,” commented Grahn-Laasonen.
Finnish nursery school teachers have a monthly base wage of roughly 2,300 euros, which is close to the average in all of Europe.
Mika Kortelainen, a chief researcher at the Government Institute for Economic Research (VATT), on Tuesday drew attention to a comparison indicating that the wages are not only lower than the OECD average but also increase much less with experience than in other OECD countries.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Roni Rekomaa – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi