The School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB) have published the recommended pay awards for teachers and school leaders. Simon Bellard, HR Consultant, outlines the key points of the STRB recommendations in this article.
What are the STRB Recommendations?
The STRB has recommended that from September 2020, the minimum of the Main Pay Range (MPR) is increased by 5.5%. In addition, the maximum MPR and minima and maxima of all other pay and allowance ranges for teachers and school leaders will be uplifted by 2.75%. This is in line with union negotiations made back in June 2020. This uplift will apply to all four regional pay bands.
They also make a further recommendation that the MPR and Upper Pay Range (UPR) points are reintroduced on the advisory pay points. Should these recommendations be implemented, teachers would see an increase to all parts of the teacher pay framework by a considerable margin.
Schools will see an increase in their funding for the financial year 2020-21, with further increases in 2021-22 and 2022-23 set out as part of the 2019 Spending Round settlement. Given the extent of the challenges in teacher supply, the STRB recommends that schools should place significant priority on teacher pay when setting their budgets. What this will mean for individual schools, however, will vary considerably and it is for school leaders and governing bodies to make decisions on this taking into account their individual circumstances.
Consideration of advisory pay points
There was consensus among consultees that reintroducing pay points on the MPR and UPR would have a positive impact on the teacher workforce by providing greater clarity about pay and career progression.
Further Pay Awards
The STRB referred to the significant uncertainties about the future state of the labour market and wider economy as a result of COVID-19, stating that it is also unclear how schools will need to operate in the next academic year, and the demands that this might impose on teachers and school leaders. The STRB have committed to evaluating the case for further increases to starting pay, and any changes to the pay progression profile for 2021/22 and 2022/23, in the light of the evidence available at that time.
The STRB also believe that there would be benefits of investigating more into the role of the UPR and how such a pay threshold should operate alongside consideration of how to better align the pay structure with the key stages of teachers’ careers. There is also a case for reviewing elements of the pay structure for school leaders in the coming years.
- The Government’s decision on the STRB recommendations is likely to be announced anytime now, with an eight week consultation period on the updated draft School Teachers Pay & Conditions document (STPCD) taking us to around the middle of September.
- The teachers’ pay order then needs to be laid before parliament for 21 calendar days, taking us into October before the 2020 pay award and changes to the STPCD (backdated to 1st September) are finally agreed.