Scotland’s largest teachers union calls for pay increase

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The Educational Institute of Scotland, the largest teachers union, has called for a fair pay increase for all of Scotland’s teachers this year.

The demand comes as part of World Teachers’ Day with the The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS), the country’s largest teaching union, calling on local authorities and the Scottish Government to deliver a fair pay increase to Scotland’s teachers this year.

The call from the EIS comes after the Scottish Government and COSLA chose to walk away from ongoing negotiations on a fair pay settlement for teachers – pushing teachers towards industrial action.

This week, the Edinburgh Evening News reported that many teachers in the Capital were paying for their own supplies.

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Commenting, EIS General Secretary Larry Flanagan said, “World Teacher Day is a celebration of the importance of education, and of the vital role of teachers in educating the young people who are the future of society.
However, in Scotland, the Scottish Government and COSLA have marked World Teacher Day by walking away from talks with teacher unions on a fair pay settlement. The EIS is running a campaign calling for government to Value Education and Value Teachers – but it is clear by their actions yesterday that they do not value education and value teachers highly enough, despite their frequent claims that education is their top priority.”
“The reality is that Scotland’s teachers are some of the most overworked and lowest paid of any country within the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
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“The recent OECD report Education at a Glance highlighted that Scotland is one of the few countries where teachers’ pay has been cut, in real terms, over the past decade. The report also highlighted that the average pay for a teacher across OECD countries is equivalent to over £42,000 per year while, in Scotland, pay for a class teacher maxes out at £36,480. That is why Scotland’s teachers feel so undervalued, and explains the current crisis in teacher recruitment and retention right across the country. Scotland’s teachers, pupils and the Scottish education system deserves far better – it is time for the Scottish Government to truly Value Education and Value Teachers.”

Last night Seamus Searson, general secretary of the SSTA said teachers’ pay has been eroded by 20 per cent over the past decade while workload has increased, leading to a record number of teachers quitting the profession and difficulties in retaining staff. Mr Searson said: “The SSTA had believed the Government when it said it recognises and values the commitment and hard work of its teachers.

“The SSTA had also expected the Government to recognise the damage the austerity measures had made to the teaching profession and support and reward its teachers appropriately”.

“The SSTA salaries committee has already unanimously rejected the offer, but will consider the insulting response from the Government and determine the terms of the consultative ballot of its members.”