Almost six in ten teachers will not get this year’s government proposed pay rise, capped at 1 per cent, new union research has revealed.
A survey of more than 8,000 NASUWT members exposes, it says, the “deeply concerning” picture of “how easy it is for schools to pay teachers as little as they can get away with”.
It found that 59 per cent of teachers had not received confirmation by the end of last month of whether they would receive the maximum 1 per cent award.
The denial of extra pay was highest (64 per cent) among BME [black and minority ethnic] teachers and teachers with disabilities, while 62 per cent of women failed to get the rise.
The survey also found that 60 per cent of those eligible for a rise based on performance management objectives, separate to the 1 per cent award, were denied any progression.
Education secretary Justine Greening said there was a “strong case” for a continued 1 per cent cap on teacher pay in 2017-18
It comes after a Schools Week investigation last year revealed how heads of some of the country’s largest academy chains had pocketed pay rises totalling more than £80,000.
Toby Salt of Ormiston Academies Trust received a £30,000 boost from £150,000 to £180,000, while Sir Daniel Moynihan (Harris Federation), Karen Roberts (TKAT) and John Murphy (Oasis Community Learning) each received £20,000 extra.
NASUWT general secretary Chris Keates (pictured) said the extension of “freedoms and flexibilities” around salaries had “depressed the pay” of classroom teachers while the “sky is the limit in terms of pay” for chief executives and executive heads.
“There is strong evidence of a widening pay gap between the lowest paid workers in schools and those at the top.”
Keates said the “failure” of schools to deliver a pay award to teachers has “contributed to making teaching less and less attractive to new graduates, with salaries for new teachers now 25 per cent behind the average of other graduate occupations”.
But Malcolm Trobe, interim general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said his organisation had found contrasting data to the NASUWT.
He told Schools Week that his union found the “vast majority” of heads were carrying out the performance management process “wholly appropriately” and that teachers were receiving the relevant pay progression.
Education secretary Justine Greening said last October that there was a “strong case” for a continued 1 per cent cap on teacher pay in 2017-18, which the government later warned would cost schools an extra £250 million.
Greening said there should be no expectation that all teachers would get the rise. Instead schools could choose the staff to get a boost, which could be based on performance.
Teaching unions and the School Teachers’ Review Body have since warned that a larger increase is needed to keep teachers in a profession that is struggling to recruit and retain staff.
Keates said this “crisis” would not be resolved by “continuing to pursue a policy that allows schools to pay teachers as little as they can get away with”.