Pay appeals

Advice on identifying the grounds for a pay appeal and on how you might run a successful one.

All employers must set out procedures for teachers to appeal against pay decisions with which they disagree.

For schools, the appeal procedure should be contained within the school’s pay policy which should be available from the head teacher, the school office or via the school intranet. For other teachers, it should be obtainable on request via the line manager.

You can appeal against any decision that affects your pay. The usual grounds for appeal are that the person or committee by whom the decision was made:

  • incorrectly applied any contractual provision of the School Teachers Pay and Conditions Document (STPCD) or, for those teachers whose pay is not determined by the STPCD, any relevant contractual provisions or pay policy
  • failed to have proper regard for statutory guidance
  • failed to take proper account of relevant evidence
  • took account of irrelevant or inaccurate evidence
  • was biased
  • otherwise unlawfully discriminated against the teacher.

Not all the above grounds have to be met in order to make an appeal.

Appeal procedures

Appeals must comply with statutory requirements and guidance from the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS). This would be the usual process:

  1. You receive written confirmation of the pay determination and, where applicable, the basis on which the decision was made.
  2. If you are not satisfied, you should seek to resolve this by discussing the matter informally with the decision-maker. Where this is not possible, or where you continue to be dissatisfied, you may follow a formal appeal process.
  3. You should set down in writing the grounds for questioning the pay decision (which must relate to the grounds as set out above) and send it to the person (or committee) who took the decision. They should provide a hearing to consider this and give you an opportunity to make representations in person.
  4. Following the hearing you should be informed in writing of the hearing’s decision and the right to appeal. Any appeal should be heard by a panel of three governors not involved in the original decision, again giving you the opportunity to make representations in person.
  5. The decision of the appeal panel will be given in writing and, where the appeal is rejected, will include the reasons for the decision which will be final.
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