Why is UCAC taking action on pay-related issues?
Update: January 2012
The Government published the School Teachers’ Review Body’s report, and its response to it, in December.
The recommendations are even more damaging than we had expected, and go a significant way towards destroying the current pay framework.
These are some of the most destructive recommendations:
· Heads to determine each individuals teacher’s pay; no mandatory pay points
· Salary increases linked to performance
· No certainty about pay levels when changing jobs
Elaine Edwards, UCAC’s General Secretary said, "We must be absolutely clear that what Michael Gove intends to do is to put the foundations in place for a system of local pay, where every individual teacher’s pay is determined by the headteacher of their school. It’ll be virtually impossible to secure transparency and equity under the proposed new system.
“The consequences of this will be acrimony at school level, an increasingly uncomfortable relationship between teachers and management, and a destructive divisiveness between schools whose ability to pay the highest salary will determine who gets the best teachers.
“UCAC calls for the powers to determine teachers’ pay and conditions to be devolved to the Welsh Government so that we can ensure a proper national system for Wales.”
UCAC has responded to the Government’s consultation on the report. The union will await the Government’s response to the consultation and then decide on its next steps.
The full report is available from: www.education.gov.uk/pay along with the Government’s press release http://www.education.gov.uk/inthenews/inthenews/a00218079/all-schools-to-get-freedom-to-pay-good-teachers-more.
In light of an overwhelming ballot result, UCAC's National Executive decided that the union's school teacher members would take action short of a strike as of 22 October.
The union will be in dispute with the Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove over the Westminster Government's proposals on regional or local pay, a cap on pay, and performance-related pay for teachers.
As a result of the ballot, UCAC has the right to strike, but won't be taking that step for the time being. School teacher members will work to rule, and the union will reassess the situation once the School Teachers' Review Body has made its recommendations for teachers' pay. The recommendations are expected at the end of October.
Elaine Edwards, UCAC's General Secretary said, "The ballot result demonstrates the strength of members' feelings on these issues. They are concerned about the effects of the Westminster Government's proposals on the education system and educational standards in Wales, as well as on the Welsh economy as a whole.
"We're starting off by working to rule, as a warning to the Secretary of State. But he needs to bear in mind that we've now got the right to strike if we feel we need to. We very much hope that he will listen to our concerns and that we won't need to take such steps."