teachers pay ontario

This is how much the average Ontario high school teacher makes per year

While teachers in Ontario prepare to handle classrooms full of students later this month for the first time since March, some are wondering whether they're paid enough to take on the risk associated with the job.

According to recent numbers commissioned by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, high school teachers in the province make, on average, six figures a year — $103,926 with benefits included.

This equates to $536 per school day, or $107.20 per instructional hour, if not considering the many hours of grading, lesson planning and other work that teachers do outside of class time.

Of course, this number is before tax.

In Toronto specifically, the TDSB reported the average compensation for a secondary school teacher in 2018-2019 to be $108,804 with benefits. For an elementary school teacher, this number was $104,557.

But, it's important to keep in mind that teachers' benefits can often account for upwards of $12,000, meaning that while total compensation may be more than $100,000, actual salaries before tax may hover somewhere closer to $90,000, on average.

The risks of instructing in-person classes at this time is hard to measure, though. Is this enough pay? Many would argue it's not.

Teachers' unions continue to voice their concerns over the provincial government's contentious back-to-school plan to the point that they are now filing a formal complaint with the labour board.

This is despite Premier Doug Ford's assurances to teachers, parents and students alike that its policies are based on the advice of top health officials and experts

Ford said at a media briefing on Monday that he has been begging unions to work with him and that he "just can't understand" why their interactions have been so difficult.

To teachers themselves, he said: "I think the world of you, I have all the confidence in the world in you, and I know you're going to do an incredible job for our kids and get through this as safely as possible." 

Though the date for resuming classes province-wide was initially set for September 8, school boards have been granted a two-week window in which to kick off the academic year with new measures such as mandatory masks, physical distancing, enhanced cleaning and on-site public health nurses.

Lead photo by

Neil Ta


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