From education to employment

Update on discussions with teacher and headteacher unions

woman sat on chair

Following extensive negotiations with unions and the WLGA, the Welsh Government yesterday presented a new enhanced pay offer for teachers and headteachers.

In addition to the 5% pay rise, the new revised pay offer would comprise of an additional 3%, of which 1.5% is consolidated and 1.5% is non-consolidated.

The non-consolidated part of the offer would include pay, allowances and employer National Insurance contributions.  It would be for the full 2022-23 academic year.

The consolidated part of the offer includes pay, allowances, employer National Insurance and employer pension contributions. It would be backdated to September 2022.

Both parts of the offer would apply to all statutory salary points.

If the new offer is ultimately accepted, it has been agreed that the Welsh Government would fully fund the cost of the 3% offer in 2022-23. The Welsh Government and WLGA will continue discussions around how the cost of the consolidated 1.5% increase in future years can be funded without impacting on school budgets.

It is important to be clear that the new pay offer is the maximum we can afford and we have been open and transparent about our financial constraints with our social partners. The reality is, that if this year’s offer is rejected we will be unable to make any higher pay offer.

As Minister, I have been clear that we can only support pupil wellbeing and deliver high quality teaching if our workforce also feel supported. Workforce wellbeing must therefore be at the forefront of all we do. Over recent weeks, working with unions we have made excellent progress in this shared priority area. These discussions will continue and will form part of the package that members will be consulted on. Further details on this package will be published in due course.

It is welcome that as a result of recent discussions, both the NEU and NAHT have agreed to present the new pay offer to their members. The decision by the NEU not to proceed next week with strike action is good news for pupils, parents and staff.

I would like to thank everyone who has participated in these constructive negotiations. We now await a formal response from the trade unions.

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