“We were always facing extremely tight timeframes for the publication of this report and we are now entering an 8 week consultation period regarding the proposals at a time when teachers are on leave. Whilst we note that any pay rise will be backdated, in future we must ensure that decisions on pay are made early so that the profession is not kept waiting unnecessarily.

"The IWPRB recommended increase of 2.4% has rightly been deemed insufficient by the Minister. But, even at 2.75%, teacher pay will again fall in real terms compared to RPI inflation and fall further behind pay increases in the wider economy. The 5% increase proposed for the minimum starting salary does assist but we must never lose sight of the fact that with a worsening recruitment and retention crisis, we need urgent action to restore the pay losses since 2010 and make teacher pay competitive with that for other graduate professions.

“The IWPRB report itself does reference the fact that teachers in Wales on scales between the minimum and maximum of the main pay scale had already lost out following the 2017 pay round and recommended redressing that anomaly. However, I see nothing in the Ministers proposals that deals with that issue.

“A further concern relates to the funding of the pay increase. If the pay rise isn’t fully funded this will mean more cuts to our children’s education as Local Authorities struggle to balance the books. We have to ensure that sufficient money is devolved from Westminster to Cardiff Bay to fund teachers’ pay rises and education in general. We want to work with the Welsh Government to make that a reality at a time when education funding here in Wales is in crisis.

“The NEU will be responding fully to the consultation on both the report and the Minister’s proposals.”

ENDS

Press contacts:

The National Education Union is an amalgamation of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) and National Union of Teachers (NUT), formed on 1 September 2017. Please see the below contact details for assistance:

Contact: David Evans, National Education Union, Tŷ Sinnott, 18 Neptune Court, Vanguard Way, Cardiff CF24 5PJ.  Tel: 029 20491818. Mob: 07815 071164.

e-mail: david.evans@neu.org.uk