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Abstract

The post-Soviet teacher salary system is referred to as a "teaching load" (stavka) system, because the number of teaching hours accounts for the wide range of teachers' income. This article discusses the challenges of the stavka system, presents a few changes and modifications over time, and provides examples of salary reforms of two countries: the 2007 teacher salary reform in Mongolia and the 2011 reform in Kyrgyzstan. The UNICEF Kyrgyzstan study identifies six negative consequences of the high correlation between the salary and the number of hours taught: vulnerability of teachers, micromanagement of teachers, overcrowding of schools, vacancies as placeholders or "strategic vacancies", excessive teaching loads, the redistribution of teaching hours to non-specialists. The Government of Mongolia successfully replaced the teaching load system with a workload system in 2007. In Kyrgyzstan, the re-stratification process led to a revolt of those who lost in the wake of the reform. Within a period of two years only, they ensured that the stavka-system was, with a few exceptions, put back in place.

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