Teaching unions in England and Wales are balloting members in a dispute over pay, with the National Education Union (NEU), school leaders union NAHT and the NASUWT all announcing results in the coming days. Industrial action could result in the closure of the majority of state schools. But do you think teachers should be given a pay rise to avoid disruption to education? Vote in our poll.
The Government held talks with unions on Monday, January 9, to discuss pay changes. Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the NEU said that while talks with Education Secretary Gillian Keegan were welcome, she was unsure about what could be achieved.
She claimed that teachers have lost 24 percent of their pay in real terms since 2010, while this is 27 percent for support staff over the same period. During an interview with BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, she said a one-off payment to teachers would be “superficially attractive” and would cause further problems as it would not be properly built into future pay.
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She added: “This is a crisis which has been building for 12 years, as we have seen teachers leave our schools and children are left without the specialist teachers they need in order to fulfil their potential. If we take strike action it’s a last resort to say this cannot continue.”
After the meeting, a department for education spokesperson said” “[Ms Keegan] expressed the importance of working together to avoid strike action especially given the significant disruption due to the pandemic over recent years.”
So what do YOU think? Is it time for teachers to get a fair pay rise to protect children’s education? Vote in our poll and leave your thoughts in the comment section below.