Pay advisers may come from business world;Pay and conditions

17th September 1999 at 01:00
BUSINESSMEN with no experience of teaching could be used to advise governors on the pay and performance of heads and deputies, under plans drawn up for ministers.

As many as 3,000 advisers, including private-sector managers, may be needed to implement all the Government's Green Paper pay proposals - which include the introduction of the new performance threshold to boost the salaries of good classroom teachers.

The figures are contained in a document produced by HayGroup - the consultancy firm advising the Government on introducing the pay reforms. Hay is also compiling a dictionary of teacher excellence, which will be used for assessing staff performance.

Both the National Association of Head Teachers and the Secondary Heads' Association are worried about business managers being involved in headteachers' appraisals.

John Dunford, SHA's general secretary, said that such a move would be "totally inappropriate" - and is unconvinced that inspectors from the Office for Standards in Education and local education authority advisers would be any better qualified.

David Hart, the NAHT's general secretary, is also worried the Government will not come up with the significant amounts of cash needed to make the new system work. "The last thing we want is training on the cheap - that would be a disaster," he said.

The Government is still consulting on the Hay criteria to decide who should become assessors and advisers.

The Hay Group document, Research into teacher effectiveness, sets out a model for the colossal training programme that will be needed to make the Government's proposals work.

It estimates that at least 3,000 threshold assessors and external advisers will be required to advise schools on setting performance thresholds, and governors on headteachers' and deputies' pay and performance. More consultants will be needed to advise schools generally on performance management, and all will need training.

The paper suggests assessors and trainers could be drawn from the ranks of senior school managers, OFSTED inspectors, education authority advisers, and teacher-training institutions.

But they could also be for assessors for Investors in People or national vocational qualifications, private-sector human resource managers and others with experience in industrialemployee relations. UNIONS 'POSTURING' OVER PRP

THE LEADER of the third largest teaching union has attacked his rivals for "scaremongering" over performance-related pay. Writing in today's TES, Peter Smith, general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, accuses the other classroom unions of political posturing in their opposition to the Government's Green Paper proposals on teachers' pay.

He said: "There are powerful voices who claim that the Government...is proposing payment by results - a return to the discredited 19th-century link between pupil exam performance and teacher pay."

He called on the unions to engage in a difficult but necessary debate with the Government.

A motion from the largest union, the National Union of Teachers, called on this week's Trades Union Congress conference in Brighton to "give immediate and full support to the opposition to payment by results and performance-related pay for schoolteachers in England and Wales."

Platform, 17

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