I would first of all like to offer my thanks for the STRB’s work over the last year on its 28th report. I would now like to ask for your recommendations on the pay award in 2019/20.
The Government has adopted a more flexible approach to public sector pay, to address areas of skills shortages and in return for improvements to public sector productivity. However, in reaching your recommendations on 2019/20 pay award, you will want to ensure they are affordable. I recognise that the flexibilities in the pay system mean that the cost of the award to individual schools depends significantly on decisions made by those schools. Nonetheless, I consider it important that you give careful consideration to whether recommendations are affordable across the school system as a whole. My evidence will provide information on this matter to support your considerations. This year, I also request that you describe in your final report what steps you have taken to ensure affordability has been given due consideration when reaching your recommendations.
Furthermore, you will want to consider how the pay award can best utilise the flexibility within the Government’s pay policy to address areas of skill shortage, while remaining within the bounds of affordability across the school system as a whole. In particular, you will want to consider how the pay award can best encourage high quality entrants to join the profession and support their progression within the workforce. My evidence will provide a detailed account
of the teacher labour market based on the latest recruitment and retention data, and I ask that you outline what consideration you have given to targeting in your final report.
Over recent years, the STRB’s recommendations have led to fundamental reform of the teacher pay framework. In your last report, you called for the opportunity to further review the classroom teacher pay framework, to ensure it is providing a clear and compelling career pathway, and also called attention to the particular recruitment and retention challenges in certain phases and subjects. As you know, the department is currently developing a recruitment and retention strategy and as part of this the department has been considering your recommendation and how the pay system can best support schools with addressing recruitment and retention challenges. As a consequence, I intend to set you a further remit, issuing a further remit letter with a separate reporting deadline, in the new year. This will ask for your recommendations on how the teacher pay framework can be further reformed to ensure it is providing a clear career pathway for classroom teachers, is suitably differentiated to meet current challenges and how remaining rigidities can be reformed to create a more attractive offer for teachers at all career stages. My further remit letter in the new year will provide full details on the matters for your recommendations.
Considerations to which the STRB should have regard
In considering your recommendations, you should have regard to the following:
a) The need to ensure that any proposals are affordable across the school system as a whole;
b) Evidence of the national state of teacher and school leader supply, including rates of recruitment and retention, vacancy rates and the quality of candidates entering the profession;
c) Evidence of the wider state of the labour market in England; d) Forecast changes in the pupil population and consequent changes in the level of demand for teachers;
e) The Government’s commitment to increasing autonomy for all head teachers and governing bodies to develop pay arrangements that are suited to the individual circumstances of their schools and to determine teachers' pay within the statutory minima and maxima.
Matters for recommendation
I refer to the STRB the following matters for recommendation:
• An assessment of what adjustments should be made to the salary and allowance ranges for classroom teachers, unqualified teachers and school leaders to promote recruitment and retention, within the bounds of affordability across the school system as a whole.
I would be grateful if the STRB could aim to provide a report on this matter by early May 2019. I look forward to receiving your recommendations on the 2019 pay award.
Damian Hinds Secretary of State for Education
STRB_remit_2018.pdf (196.27 KB)