We want to ensure that we can recruit and retain brilliant teachers. To ensure that teaching remains an attractive and fulfilling profession, we are delivering a fully funded pay rise for classroom teachers and those in leadership positions.
The School Teachers Review Body (STRB) has recommended a 3.5% uplift to the minima and maxima of all pay ranges and allowances in the national pay framework for the pay award due to be implemented from September 2018. I have decided to accept in full the STRB’s recommendation for a 3.5% uplift to the minima and maxima of the main pay range, building on last year’s 2% uplift to the main pay range. This will both raise starting salaries significantly and increase the competitiveness of the early career pay framework. We are also announcing a substantial uplift to pay ranges for leaders and higher-paid teachers: the minima and maxima of the upper pay range will be uplifted by 2% and on the leadership pay range by 1.5%.
As a result, classroom teachers will see the biggest benefit with starting salaries increasing between £803 and £1,004, and those at the top of the main pay range will be eligible for increases between £1,184 and £1,366. Schools will continue to determine how their staff are paid and thanks to the flexible performance-based pay system we have introduced schools are still able to choose to give teachers or leaders a higher pay rise where this is appropriate to their particular local context and budget.
We will be supporting schools in England to implement the award with an investment of £508 million through a new teachers’ pay grant of £187 million in 2018-19 and £321 million in 2019-20 from the existing Department for Education budget. This will cover, in full, the difference between this award and the cost of the 1% award that schools would have anticipated under the previous public sector pay cap. The grant will provide additional support to all maintained schools and academies, over and above the core funding that they receive through the national funding formula. We will publish further details on the distribution of this grant when the pay award is confirmed.
The Government are committed to world class public services and ensuring that public sector workers are fairly paid for the vitally important work that they do. It is thanks to our balanced approach to public finances—getting debt falling as a share of our economy, while investing in our vital services and keeping taxes low—that we are today able to announce this fair and deserved pay rise for teachers, their biggest increase since 2010-11.
We ended the 1% average pay policy in September 2017, because we recognised more flexibility is now required to deliver world-class public services including in return for improvements to public sector productivity.
We value the role of the independent pay review bodies and thank them for their work in considering pay awards. In reaching a final position for 2018-19 public sector pay awards, we have balanced a need to recognise the value and dedication of our hard-working public servants while ensuring that our public services remain affordable in the long term, to contribute to our objective of reducing public sector debt. We have also sought to ensure that pay awards are fair and consistent across public sector workforces, and reflect existing pay and benefit packages, in addition to recruitment and retention levels.
It is vital that we consider all pay awards in the light of wider pressures on public spending. Public sector pay needs to be fair both for public sector workers and the taxpayer. Around a quarter of all public spending is spent on pay and we need to ensure that our public services remain affordable for the future.
It is also vital that our world-class public services continue modernising to meet rising demand for the incredible services they provide, which improve our lives and keep us safe.
I will deposit in the Libraries of both Houses a full list of the recommendations and my proposed approach for all pay and allowance ranges.
My officials will write to all of the statutory consultees of the STRB to invite them to contribute to a consultation on the Government’s response to these recommendations and on a revised school teachers’ pay and conditions document and pay order. The consultation will last for six weeks.
My detailed response contains further information on these matters.