Most teachers 'will get real-terms pay cut'

About 60% of teachers will see their pay rise by less than inflation in September, says the Institute for Fiscal Studies

Martin George

Pay cut

Most teachers will suffer a real-terms pay cut in September, a respected thinktank has said.

An Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) analysis of today’s teacher pay settlement estimates that about 60 per cent of teachers will receive pay increases below the current 2.4 per cent headline measure of inflation.

Shadow education secretary Angela Rayner said the government "is simply refusing to give our teachers the pay rise that they deserve".

The government today announced a 3.5 per cent pay rise for teachers on the main range. However, it also said teachers on the upper ranges will get 2 per cent and leaders will receive 1.5 per cent.

IFS research fellow Luke Sibieta said: “Today's announcement of a 3.5 per cent per cent pay rise for teachers on the main pay range will help with recruitment and retention for teachers early in their career, which has emerged as a serious problem in recent years.

“However, about 60 per cent of teachers will receive below-inflation awards of 2 per cent, or in the case of school leaders 1.5 per cent.”

The government’s decision to set different pay increases for different teachers came despite the recommendation from the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB) that school leaders, as well as teachers, received a 3.5 per cent rise.

'Yet another real-terms pay cut'

The IFS’s senior research economist, Jonathan Cribb, said: “With today’s announced pay increases, it looks like lower earners – particularly new teachers ­– in the public sector are catching up slightly with private sector. But higher earners – such as doctors – are still falling behind the private sector average."

Ms Rayner said: “It’s now beyond doubt that the majority of teachers are facing yet another real-terms pay cut. This Conservative government is simply refusing to give our teachers the pay rise that they deserve.

“The pay review body warned that schools are struggling to recruit and retain teachers in leadership roles, and the government has chosen to specifically ignore this warning, and impose another real-terms pay cut on school leaders."

The DfE said it had accepted the STRB’s recommendation on the main pay range, and had made sure it was funded without any cuts to existing programmes.

The Treasury has refused to provide additional money to fund the pay increase for teachers, and chief secretary Liz Truss today told MPs that the Department for Education would provide £500 million from its central budgets for teacher pay rises over the next two years.

The government has said that schools will have to fund the first 1 per cent of the pay rise out of their existing budgets, which it says it assumes they will already have budgeted for.

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Martin George

Martin George

Martin George is a reporter at Tes

Find me on Twitter @geomr

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