Heads lodge practical protest;Teachers' pay

26th March 1999 at 00:00
The pay-by-results controversy rumbles on with Blunkett standing firm and teachers' employers wanting something for the money

HEADTEACHERS have told the Government that there are serious philosophical and practical objections against linking teachers' pay to pupils' results, writes Clare Dean.

The National Association of Head Teachers said assessment criteria must not involve a link between pay and test or exam results.

And, in its response to the Green Paper, the union said there was no way that a new appraisal system could operate from this September.

David Hart, general secretary, said the new pay and performance management system had to be workable and professionally acceptable - "otherwise it would only damage further the already dire recruitment situation".

"The Green Paper cannot be delivered without heads and deputies," he told David Blunkett, the Education Secretary.

The NAHT's response, based on 12 regional meetings, attended by more than 2,000 heads and deputies, said there had to minimum impact on workload and minimal bureaucracy.

Government, councils and governing bodies needed to create a framework for heads to carry out their responsibilities, the union said, adding that Labour must come up with the cash to support all pay decisions as well as the long-term cost of appraisal.

Funding also had to be provided to run the system and to train and develop teachers.

"The performance management system, the pay structure and the new contractual arrangements have to be slimmed down," said the NAHT. "There is a real risk that time spent on running the system will damage, not improve, standards."

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