Starting salaries for teachers could rise to £30,000 – an increase of £6,000 – under government plans to reform teacher pay.
The proposal comes after years of unions calling for an end to the "erosion" of pay, with some saying teachers have faced years of pay cuts at a time of "unprecedented levels of change" in the education system, including new curriculum and exam systems.
The minimum salary for teachers in England and Wales, excluding London, is currently £23,720, while the minimum for inner London is £29,664, according to the government website Get Into Teaching.
The government has also announced that it will:
- Look into the introduction of progression points for pay.
- Fully fund increased contributions into the Teachers’ Pension scheme.
- Develop a group of ambassador schools, to champion flexible working for teachers.
The proposals to increase teachers’ pay, along with plans to end the exemption from inspection given to schools ranked ‘outstanding’, were reported last week, after a Department for Education briefing document was leaked to the press.
Today, however, the government will also announce that it will be fully funding increased contributions into the Teachers' Pension Scheme, so that headteachers can focus as much of their resources as possible into their schools.
The DfE said this means teachers will get an employer contribution of 23.6 per cent on top of their salary towards their pension every year, to ensure the scheme is fully funded.
The education secretary will also ask for the School Teacher Review Body’s recommendations on additional pay reform, including the introduction of progression points in pay. Progression will continue to be linked to performance.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson will set out his proposal to increase teachers' starting salaries by up to £6,000 in a remit letter to the School Teachers' Review Body, asking for their recommendations on raising the starting salaries of new teachers, as well as on next year's pay award.
The government said that the £14 billion investment announced by the prime minister last week will ensure that "pay can be increased for all teachers".
But union leaders have argued that this is not enough to compensate for the succession of funding cuts schools have experienced.
In addition to the proposed increases to new teachers' salaries, trainee teachers will also receive a reformed core training content, which will aim to ensure all new trainees begin their career with high-quality evidence-based training.
Mr Williamson said: "Teachers truly are the lifeblood of a school, and I have been instantly impressed by the dedication, commitment and hard work that I have seen from those at the front of our classrooms.
"I want the best talent to be drawn to the teaching profession, and for schools to compete with the biggest employers in the labour market and recruit the brightest and the best into teaching.
"Teachers should be in no doubt that this government fully backs them in every stage of their career, starting with rewarding starting salaries, and giving them the powers they need to deal with bad behaviour and bullying and continue to drive up school standards right across the country."