How to unpack the pay package

Michael Shaw and William Stewart explain a jargon-riddled, 102-page document on salaries and conditions

As reading material it seems an excellent cure for insomnia. But those willing to wade through the jargon-heavy 102-page document published this week by the Rewards and Incentives Group will get a good indication of the future of pay and conditions for teachers.

RIG is the "social partnership" body made up of the Government and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, the NASUWT, the Professional Association of Teachers and the Association of School Leaders.

The report will now be examined by the School Teachers' Review Body, the quango which makes recommendations on pay and conditions to the Government.

Although the review body is independent, it is likely to pay far more attention to RIG's proposals than those submitted by the rebel National Union of Teachers and National Association of Head Teachers, which have both refused to join the Government's group.

The RIG submission, which is crammed with abbreviations, appears to have been written by committee and frequently makes for bewildering reading.

Apparently contradictory sentences include one which starts stating that the body "does not wish to suggest ... rewarding teachers simply for undertaking CPD" (continuing professional development"), yet then concludes that "incentives should be given serious consideration to stimulate demand".

Ben Beer, press officer for the Plain English Campaign, said: "It is clear from this document that the mechanisms behind teachers' pay are extremely complex. However, the way in which this report is presented makes it difficult reading for teachers who merely want to find out about future changes to their pay structure. There is little use of plain English, few bulleted lists to present information clearly, and no glossary. And it is 102 pages long."

Below The TES lists the key recommendations in the RIG paper and the views of the two rebel unions about them: Pay progression

Pay decisions for all teachers should be linked to a new system for performance management that ends inconsistencies in appraisal. RIG says this will not affect current automatic pay rises on the main pay scale, except for those of the worst-paid teachers.

The other view: The NUT argues that there is "little or no evidence that performance-related financial incentives improve the quality of teaching"

and that it could have a "seismic affect" on progression up the pay scale.

It also calls for a limit on classroom observation.

Part-time teachers

The report calls for a new standardised method of calculating pay that is expected to benefit the most of the 80,000 part-time teachers in England and Wales and is worth an extra pound;40 million.

The other view: the NAHT and the NUT support the moves to give part-time staff pro-rata pay that takes into account work they do outside of time in the classroom.

Excellent teachers

A separate, attractive salary range should be introduced to entice staff to take on excellent teacher status, which does not attract teaching and learning responsibility (TLR) payments.

National criteria should be developed so schools can determine how much to pay staff on the new grade, which rewards teachers for excellence in the classroom. These would take into account the level of challenge of the excellent teacher's particular job and the school's staff structure - but not how "excellent" the individual is considered to be.

The other view: the NUT argues that a separate scale for excellent teachers will be arbitrary and inappropriate. It argues all teachers should be elegible for any extra pay on offer.

Maths and science teachers

Schools should be able to attract more maths and science teachers by offering extra pay using existing bonus schemes and more flexible salaries.

Schools also need encouragement to make better use of recruitment incentives and help to overcome barriers such as budgetary constraints and complaints by staff that they are divisive.

The other view: the NUT argues that targeted payments to certain groups of teachers will be "inherently divisive and would adversely affect the motivation of teachers who do not receive them". It calls instead for improvements to overall pay levels for all teachers.

Special needs teachers

The group calls for a complete review of the system of allowances for teachers who work with pupils with special needs, both in mainstream and special schools.

Matters it says need to be examined include the overlap between these and other payments such as TLR points, which it says could be causing some teachers to miss out on payment for work they are doing with children with special needs.

The other view: The NAHT insists that special needs allowances should be retained but it suggests that schools should be given better guidance on how to use the existing system.

Teachers' professional duties

The group recommends that a list of teachers' professional duties should remain a part of the school teachers' pay and conditions document.

But, it suggests that these duties should be revised by September 2008 in order to take into account developments such as "the new professionalism agenda", and a greater emphasis on continuing professional development.

The other view: the NUT agrees that the list of statutory duties should be retained to protect teachers from extra duties that may result from initiatives such as extended schools.

The NAHT suggests further discussion about the duties after the review reports on them in December.




Leader: Steve Sinnott

Salary plus benefits: pound;84,042 plus pound;20,170 pension contributions, and pound;674 luncheon vouchers

Membership: 361,987 in 2005 (2004 - 330,709), up 9 per cent

Fee-paying members: 282,532 (273,005), up 3 per cent


Leader: Chris Keates

Salary plus benefits: pound;87,847 plus pound;20,204 pension and pound;3,571 car benefits.

Membership: 289,930 (327,953), down 12 per cent.

Fee paying members: 248,479 (236,005), up 5 per cent.


Leader: Mary Bousted

Salary plus benefits: pound;96,735 plus pound;21,309 pension Membership: 203,241 (195,511), up 4 per cent.

Fee-paying members: 124,004 (122,813), up 1 per cent


Leader: Mick Brookes

Salary plus benefits*: pound;91,038 plus pound;16,200 pension, pound;3,306 car, pound;2,268 medical insurance and pound;8,700 personal allowance

Membership: 39,521 (40,524), down 2 per cent. Fee-paying members: 28,667 (29,382) down 2 per cent


Leader: Philip Parkin

Salary plus benefits: pound;66,307 plus pound;6,811 pension and pound;1,140 medical

Membership: 33,645 (34,104), down 1 per cent

Fee-paying members: 33,645 (34,104), down 1 per cent


Leader: John Dunford

Salary plus benefits: pound;90,588 plus pound;12,229 pension plus Pounds 3,179 car and pound;896 healthcare

Membership: 12,341 (11,557), up 7 per cent

Fee-paying members: 12,341 (11,557), up 7 per cent

*Figures based on September- December 2005 package

Log in or register for FREE to continue reading.

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you