Unions call for 2 per cent pay rise for all main scale teachers

28th July 2017
Teachers' pay: Six unions call on government to fund mandatory 2 per cent pay increase for classroom teachers on main pay range

Most classroom teachers should receive a mandatory 2 per cent pay rise in September, a group of unions has said.

The six teaching unions – Association of School and College Leaders, the NAHT heads' union, NUT, ATL, UCAC and Voice – also accused the government of leaving schools with "little or no time to prepare for the implementation" of pay changes in September.

In a joint response to the government's consultation on the school teachers' review body report, the unions said: "We are of the view that individual teachers should be entitled to receive a pay increase in line with the uplift to the minimum/maximum of their respective pay range."

For most classroom teachers this would represent a 2 per cent rise in line with the STRB's recommendation that the lower and upper limit of the main pay range should be increased by this amount.

The unions said they will be "jointly advising schools" that they should provide all teachers with an increase in line with the STRB recommendations for their pay range. However, they call on the government to ensure this is "provided for on a mandatory basis in the school teachers' pay and conditions document".

The unions also said that "given the pressure on school budgets", all pay increases should be fully funded by the government. 

Earlier this month the education secretary, Justine Greening, announced she was intending to accept the recommendation by the STRB that teachers should receive an overall 1 per cent pay rise in September.

However, the STRB said there was a "real risk" schools will not be able to recruit good teachers because starting salaries lag behind other graduate occupations. Yesterday evidence emerged that young graduates are "deserting" a career in teaching.

The STRB report was delayed by the snap general election – the second time in two years the pay decision was delayed, with the announcement in 2016 set back by the EU referendum.

In their response, the unions said the late publication of the STRB's report had left an "unacceptably short timescale" for consultation, with schools left with "little or no time to prepare for the implementation of change from September".

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