I am pleased to announce today there will be an uplift of pay to reward our highly skilled and hardworking teachers in Wales.
I announced on 29 July that subject to consultation with key stakeholders I agreed in principle to accept all of the Independent Welsh Pay Review Body’s recommendations for 2020/21, and to go beyond their recommendations in some areas; introducing a pay award from 1 September 2020 to provide for:
- a 8.48% uplift to the minimum of the teacher main pay scale;
- a 3.75% uplift to the statutory maxima of the main pay scale;
- a 2.75% uplift to the statutory minima and maxima of the upper pay scale;
- a 2.75% uplift to the statutory minima and maxima of the leading practitioner pay range, the unqualified teachers’ pay scale, the leadership pay scale (including headteacher groups) and all allowances across all pay ranges;
- statutory national pay scales for all pay points on the teacher main pay scale, teacher upper pay scale, unqualified teachers’ pay scale and leadership pay scale;
- in accordance with their own pay policies, schools ensuring a 2.75% uplift across interim pay points of the leading practitioner pay range and teacher allowances to match the uplift to the national framework in making individual pay progression decisions.
I have now considered the responses to that consultation and can confirm that nothing has emerged that warrants reconsideration of the proposed pay award for teachers for 2020/21.
Consequently, I have made the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions (Wales) Order 2020 which gives effect to the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions (Wales) Document 2020.
The pay award will be backdated to 1 September 2020.
Today’s announcement shows the benefit and continuation of the Welsh Government gaining responsibility for these powers. In setting teachers’ pay for the second time, we have continued to diverge from the proposals in England by awarding teachers in Wales higher starting pay and introducing some key changes requested by the profession such as experience based pay progression and national statutory pay scales. This will help to promote teaching as a profession of choice for graduates and career changers. Alongside our reforms to professional learning, the curriculum and initial teacher training, it will help to encourage the highest quality teachers to join the profession here in Wales.
We recognise that teachers’ pay is a significant element of schools’ and local authorities’ budgets. It was anticipated that the increased costs of this pay award would be met from the increase in funding allocated to local authorities from Welsh Government via the Revenue Support Grant, combined with provision from local authorities’ own revenue raising powers. However, in light of the pandemic, we are also well aware of the many competing pressures on budgets. Therefore, following discussions with local government, we will provide a total of £5.538 million in support of the cost of the pay award in this financial year. This includes £3.981 million which is in addition to the funding already provided to local authorities through the local government settlement, for years nursery to year 11, and a further £1.556 million to recognise the full increase in the post-16 allocation.
In announcing this Teachers’ Pay award, I note that negotiations between Further Education colleges and unions are ongoing. The Welsh Government has a long standing commitment to pay parity and a further announcement will be made in due course.