Teachers condemn 'appalling' award

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The Independent Online
UNION leaders reacted angrily yesterday to the 'appallingly low' pay increase for teachers announced by the Government.

Following a report by the School Teachers' Review Body, John Patten, the Secretary of State for Education, said qualified classroom teachers will receive an increase of 0.55 per cent on 1 April, in addition to a one-off payment of pounds 90 at the beginning of May. Headteachers and deputy heads will receive a 1 per cent rise.

Mr Patten also announced that a new 18-point pay structure for all classroom teachers, ranging from pounds 11,244 to pounds 30,441, will be introduced in September, which will bring the total pay increase up to 1.5 per cent. (The average teaching salary is currently pounds 20,630.)

The minister welcomed the review body's intention to develop more detailed proposals linking pay more closely to teachers' performance. 'I am quite clear that this is the way ahead,' he said.

Nigel de Gruchy, general secretary of the National Association of Schoolmasters/Union of Women Teachers, which is balloting its members on a possible boycott of all national tests, condemned the pay award as 'abysmal' and said teachers would be 'very angry'.

Peter Smith, general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, commented: 'This will be deeply disappointing for the overwhelming majority of teachers who are at the cutting edge delivering the Government's education reforms.'

David Hart, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said the increase was 'appallingly low' and a 'poor reward' for the work teachers had undertaken in order to implement government reforms.

Under the new pay structure, teachers will move up the scale by earning points for experience, qualifications, responsibility and excellence - particularly in the classroom.

STRB Report 1993; HMSO; pounds 11.55.