Teachers lobbied MPs this week as part of their campaign against pay, pensions and working conditions, with just a 1% pay rise likely for next year.
More than 100 MPs including Shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt were lobbied by teachers, angry over a recommendation from the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB) that teachers should receive a 1% increase in pay for the coming year. Michael Gove said he intends to accept the recommendations in full, even though the STRB warned that the profession might have trouble attracting new recruits because of continuing pay restraints, which could become a pressing concern if wages fail to keep pace with other sectors that are recruiting graduates. “This challenging context points to a need for a fuller review of the teachers’ pay framework as soon as government priorities permit to ensure the profession remains attractive,” the STRB said.
NUT and NASUWT leaders said that the rise would not make up for continuing cuts to the real value of teachers’ take-home pay. NUT’s Christine Blower condemned the 1% increase as ‘totally inadequate’. “Teacher morale is at an all-time low, with many working in excess of 60 hours a week for uncertain pay and worsening pensions,” she said.
Christine Keates, NASUWT’s general secretary, warned: “The assault on pay, combined with the attacks on teachers’ pensions, excessive workload, punitive accountability and job loss are a toxic mix, making teaching increasingly unattractive,” she said. “Resignations from the profession are up and applications for teacher training are down.”
Did you take part in the lobby? Do you think the Stand Up for Education Campaign will help in negotiations with the government, in the light of the STRB’s warning about teacher recruitment?