Teachers’ pay scales announced?

Teachers’ pay scales announced?

What should you do?

Following the Department for Education’s announcement, teachers in England received a 6.5 per cent pay rise from September 2023.

This update means new teachers entering the profession will earn a minimum of £30,000, with those teaching in London potentially starting at up to £36,745.

This pay adjustment applies across various scales, including main and upper pay scales, leadership, and headteacher positions.

Schools and local authorities are obliged to adhere to these pay scales, although academies and other non-maintained schools have the flexibility to set their own rates.

The pay rise, however, presents financial challenges for schools, especially since the Department for Education (DfE) will only provide extra funding to cover three per cent of the increase, expecting schools to fund the remaining portion from their existing budgets.

This decision is based on the Government’s calculation that schools can afford a four per cent pay award following a £2 billion increase announced in the Autumn statement.

To assist, the DfE has pledged additional funding of £525 million for the 2023-24 financial year and £900 million for 2024-25 to cover the full cost of the award above 3.5 per cent, nationally.

In response to the rising costs associated with the teacher pay rise, schools should consider the following strategies to mitigate financial pressure:

  • A budget review: Schools need to carefully review and adjust their budgets to accommodate the pay rise, prioritising essential expenditures and identifying potential savings.
  • Utilisation of additional funding: Make full use of the additional Government funding provided for the pay rise, ensuring it is allocated efficiently to cover the increased wage costs.
  • Financial management and forecasting: Engage in strategic financial management and forecasting to plan for future financial needs and ensure sustainability.
  • Workload management: Participate in the Government’s initiative for workload reduction to help retain staff and reduce turnover costs. The DfE’s workload reduction taskforce aims to support school and trust leaders in minimising workload for teachers and leaders, with an ambition to reduce teacher and leader workload by five hours per week.
  • Exploring additional revenue streams: Schools could explore additional revenue streams, such as facility rentals, grants, or fundraising activities, to bolster their finances.
  • Efficiency improvements: Look for ways to improve operational efficiencies, potentially using technology or by renegotiating contracts and procurement processes to lower costs.

By implementing these strategies, schools can better manage their finances in light of the teacher pay rise and ensure they continue to deliver high-quality education without compromising on financial stability.

We are experts in school and academy finances, so if you require financial support or advice, please get in touch.