Schools told to start performance-related pay for teachers

18 Apr 13
The Department for Education has issued guidance to English schools on introducing performance-related pay for teachers from September.

By Vivienne Russell | 18 April 2013 

The Department for Education has issued guidance to English schools on introducing performance-related pay for teachers from September.

In School teachers’ pay and conditions document, published yesterday, the department sets out the proposed pay system, which follows recommendations by the independent pay review body for teachers.

Under the changes, automatic pay increases linked to length of service will be replaced with a reward system based on teachers’ individual performance as assessed at their annual appraisal. Schools will also be given greater local discretion and flexibility and allowed to make awards above the mandatory points in pay scales. The main national pay scales will be retained only as points of reference and to help inform the salary expectations of new teachers.

There is also scope to increase the remuneration of teachers who take on specific, fixed-term responsibilities or make wider contributions to school life.

However, a broad national pay framework would be retained, including higher bands for teachers working in London and fringe areas.

A DfE spokesman said: ‘It is vital that schools can recruit and reward the best teachers. The advice will help schools to review their pay policies and put in place arrangements that enable them to pay the best teachers more.’

The first pay awards linked to performance will be made in September 2014.

Christine Blower, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said performance-related pay had been ‘increasingly discredited’ as a means of motivating employees. She raised concerns that decisions could be based more on funding pressure or whether a ‘teacher’s face fits’ than on their contribution to their schools.

‘The NUT deplores the fact that the government has pressed ahead with its proposals to remove national pay scales, link all pay progression to appraisal/performance and end the right to be paid at the same level when changing job,’ Blower added.

‘These changes could deter graduates from entering teaching, restrict serving teachers’ ability to move jobs and cause many to leave teaching.’



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