Heads drop fight

12th December 2003 at 00:00
Primary headteachers have finally dropped their long-running equal pay battle after losing an employment tribunal test case. Their retreat will come as a major relief for the local authorities, fronted by South Ayrshire.

But the Association of Head Teachers in Scotland claims that the legal fight heavily influenced the outcome of the post-McCrone agreement and brought primary heads significant benefits.

Solicitors acting for AHTS advised against any appeal to the verdict delivered in late October and this week the association executive opted to withdraw, despite continued financial support from the Equal Opportunities Commission.

Kay Hall, association president, said: "If our actions have helped change the climate in Scottish schools from one of regarding children's time in nursery and primary as being preparatory for the 'real' work of secondary education ie. examinations, then we have been largely successful."

The tribunal ruled that the heads failed to show that their job involved "like work" with secondary heads of similar sized schools. A follow-up test case on work of "equal value" has now been ditched.

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