Japan considers first raise in teachers’ overtime allowance in 50 years

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Japan is contemplating raising “adjustment allowances” for public school teachers for the first time in approximately 50 years to improve teacher compensation, as reported by The Japan Times on April 13, 2024.


Adjustment allowances are provided in lieu of overtime pay, and are presently set at 4% of the monthly salary in Japan.

These allowances are governed by the Act on Special Measures concerning Salaries and Other Conditions for Education Personnel of Public Compulsory Education Schools, etc (Act No. 77 of 1971).


A subcommittee of the Central Council for Education, which advises the education minister, is discussing raising allowances to at least 10% of monthly salary, mirroring a proposal from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party of Japan in May 2023.


Suggestions have also been made for replacing the current fixed-amount allowances with overtime benefits, which would vary depending on the overtime hours worked.


However, it was considered preferable by an increasing number of subcommittee members to improve teachers’ treatment without changing the adjustment allowances due to the challenge of accurately delineating between work hours and related activities.

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