Education secretary Michael Gove has approved a 1 per cent pay rise for teachers from this September, although schools will not be obliged to pass the increase on to all staff.
Mr Gove has approved the recommendations made by advisory group the School Teachers’ Review Body to increase salaries at the top and bottom of the main pay scale by 1 per cent.
However, with the introduction of performance-related pay from September, headteachers have the power to decide on pay rises for teachers within the minimum and maximum salaries.
Mr Gove also accepted a recommendation to stop publishing the “reference points” on the teachers’ pay scales from September, which were used to determine pay when rises were automatically linked to length of service.
The 1 per cent pay rise, which is open to a six-week consultation, is in line with other public sector workers. It received a mixed reception from unions.
The NUT is expected to use the consultation period to press the government into making the 1 per cent increase obligatory for all teachers.
Christine Blower, general secretary of the NUT, said: “This 1 per cent pay increase in teachers’ pay scales is totally inadequate. Over the lifetime of this coalition government, the real value of teachers’ take-home pay will have fallen by around 15 per cent.
“Even more worryingly, schools will not actually be required to pay a 1 per cent increase to teachers if they want to ignore the government’s advisory reference points.
“In a confirmation of a further attack on the teachers’ pay system, even those advisory points will be withdrawn next year leading to increasing chaos and dispute at school level.
“The NUT will be calling on Michael Gove to reconsider this derisory pay settlement and to take action to ensure that every teacher gets an adequate pay increase in September and to ensure all schools follow a national pay scale.”
Mary Bousted, general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, said the 1 per cent rise amounted to “common sense”, but pointed out teachers’ pay was still continuing to fall in real terms.
She said: “We expect all schools to give all their teaching staff a 1 per cent pay rise at minimum from September as the report recommends. There are no excuses to fail to do so.
“While we recognise that the economy has not fully recovered, it is fair to point out that the 1 per cent recommended increase is well below the current rate of inflation and also falls behind rises in both average earnings and pay rises in the private sector.”
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