Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday announced that the government plans to extend the retirement age for teachers by five years to 65-years-old in order to maintain stability in the number of teachers.
Marking International Teacher Day, Mr Hun Sen also said teacher salaries will be increased to about $250 per month, from the current minimum wage of $240.
“I think that at 65-years-old, teachers still have the ability and cleverness to teach,” Mr Hun Sen said, noting that thousands of teachers retire each year, but the ranks need to remain filled.
“The lack of teachers is a big problem,” he said. “I think approving amendments to the law will not be difficult, it’s important we all agree on this.”
Education Minister Hang Chuon Naron said some classrooms have 60 to 70 students due to the lack of teachers, when there should only be a maximum of 30.
“We are still lacking teachers because recruitment does not keep pace with retirement,” he said.
Yesterday morning, teachers attempted to protest along the riverside in Phnom Penh to demand a monthly salary of about $490, but were blocked by Daun Penh district security guards.
Ouk Chhayavy, president of Cambodia Independent Teacher Association, said teachers submitted a petition to the Education Ministry over their monthly wages after the protest was blocked.
“In order for a better livelihood, the teachers need 2 million riel (about $490) per month,” he said.