Benefits of teaching

Teaching is a challenging and varied career. While it rates highly for job satisfaction, inspiring the next generation also offers attractive material rewards.

A competitive salary, great conditions and a generous pension

From your probationary year onwards, a career in teaching provides good prospects for career development and a competitive salary.

Newly qualified teachers in their probation year currently start on a salary of £22,866. Once fully registered, salaries rise by annual increments over the first five years from £27,438 to £36,480. Employers may also offer additional incentives for relocation and other expenses.

Promotion prospects are good for talented teachers to develop their careers. Head teachers in Scotland’s largest schools can earn up to £88,056.

Your working week

Teachers work a 35 hour week with a maximum of 22.5 hours devoted to class contact time.


While there are a few myths about teachers’ holiday entitlement, the facts are both straightforward and attractive. A teacher’s full working year is 195 days. That includes 5 days of in-service training. Every year, you get 40 days’ holiday at full pay.


Teachers in Scotland qualify for generous pension benefits. The scheme provides a very valuable defined pension that’s based on career average earnings. Further benefits for you and your dependants include ‘death in service’ cover.

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Catriona Riddoch – Chemistry Teacher at St Andrew’s Academy

“During my own school days I was passionate about learning but I also really liked helping others around me too. That was one of the reasons I wanted to pursue a career in teaching. I wanted a career where my education was never going to stop and, in teaching, you’re always learning, especially from your pupils.

“People say teaching is a lot of work – and it is – but the benefits of the career outweigh this. It’s a fun, exciting job. No two days are the same. It’s really rewarding and there’s always the opportunity for career development.

“I’m enthusiastic about science and always aim to pass this enthusiasm onto my pupils. You’d be surprised about how excited a class get about trying things out, even just mixing two chemicals together. If you’re interested in teaching, I’d say get into a school and get experience of what it’s all about. That way you’ll know if it’s for you.”

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