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Notes for Division Meeting January 2008
[Previous meeting (November 2007)]
Thursday January 24th 2008
Belstead Brook Hotel, Ipswich
Apologies already recorded: Penny Cook, Roger Mackay. Paul Widdowson will be late.
|= Items involving expenditure decisions||= Items for Discussion/Decision|
Section A: National with National Executive Report
|Kendra Deacon||Broadland, Downham & District, Norfolk (West), Norwich & District|
Bury St Edmunds, Sudbury & District
|Student Teachers –||those involved in Initial Teacher Training/Education.|
|Just Qualified –||
teachers who have just finished their initial teacher training and are about to take up their first teaching post.
|Newly Qualified Teachers (NQTs) –||teachers in their first year of employment as a qualified teacher during which they are subject to Induction requirements.|
|Early Career Teachers –||teachers in their second to fifth years (inclusive) of teaching.|
|Leadership Group –||all teachers paid under the Leadership Pay Spine including head teachers, deputy head teachers and assistant head teachers.|
|Mid-Career Teachers -||teachers with approximately 7 to 20+ years of teaching.|
|GRTP -||teachers who are currently on or have recently completed Graduate, Registered and/or Teach First initial teacher training routes.|
|Young Teachers –||NUT members aged 35 or under. This is an age-based definition agreed by Annual Conference - the group may include members who are in any or all of the above categories.)|
|• an amendment as a result of the introduction of links between performance management and pay progression in England; and|
|• the introduction of new pay standards for teachers in England and Wales.|
|Other changes include:|
|• an encouragement to governing bodies to use their discretion to appoint teachers who were formerly employed as leadership group teachers or ASTs, Soulbury paid staff or on the higher level pay scales in sixth form colleges or JNCTRE establishments and who are entitled to be paid on the UPS, to posts above U1 on the UPS;|
|• a new provision to secure that on taking up posts in England or Wales, main scale teachers are in receipt of mandatory experience points for service in state schools in Scotland and Northern Ireland;|
|• a change that makes Fast Track teachers subject to the working time provisions for classroom teachers; and|
|• an end to the recruitment of Fast Track teachers through the ITT route.|
The NUT and ASPECT have held further talks with Janet Wellings concerning the desirability or otherwise of Advisory Teachers being placed on Soulbury rather than Teachers’ Pay and Conditions. The reasons for examining the pros and cons have arisen because of changes to the Soulbury pay scale, which have effectively added 3 extra Performance-Related pay spine points to the previous maximum (SPA or “Structured Professional Assessment” Points). This would mean that those (new) Advisory Teachers who are already on Soulbury would have access to higher salaries than those who were already ATs in 2003 and who chose to remain on Teachers’ Pay and Conditions. Those ATs have a guarantee to be able to stay in the Teachers’ Pension Scheme for as long as they stay in post. Advisory Headteachers are in a similar position in that they could benefit from up to 3 SPA points if transferring to Soulbury. SPA points are discretionary and depend on performance criteria, but so far virtually all applicants have got at least SPA 1 and 2. It is clear therefore that there is likely to be a considerable advantage in going onto Soulbury pay.
The only concern therefore remains pensions, as it is not possible for new Soulbury post holders to be admitted to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme (and has not been since 2003). As the Teachers’ Pension Scheme was amended from January 1st 2007 and the Local Government Pension Scheme is also about to change (from April 2008?), the situation has become very complicated. The principle difference between the 2 schemes is that the “normal” age of retirement (without reduction) is 60 for Teachers and 65 for Local Government. So those ATs wanting to retire at 60 might have to work longer to get their full LG pension. Some comparative pay and pensions information is on our website on www.suffolknut.org.uk/Soulbury.html .
We have pointed out that it is vital that each individual Advisory Teacher needs to be given information about the effect of changing over to LG Pensions before exercising that choice. We think it should remain a choice. The NUT has therefore requested that the Authority produces a print-out for each Advisory Teacher/Headteacher giving as best an estimate as possible for each individual person of the effect on them of transferring to Local Government Pensions..
PS outlined the budgetary situation, which is that, assuming the same level of buy-back as currently applies, the budgets for 2007-8 to 2009-10 should all balance, even after the cuts imposed by Suffolk CC. These cuts mean that from 2010, there would be no subsidy for CMS coming from the CC budget - everything has to be covered by government grants and money earned by the service selling services to schools etc.
The budgets can balance thanks to a guaranteed three years of a new grant of £131,000 from Government, DCSF Instrument Grant.
PS saw this as still being unsatisfactory and that there was a need for further savings, in order to be able to meet the final tranche of cuts in 2010. Our fear is that any further changes will simply make the service ripe for privatisation.
We responded that, in fact, the situation was much healthier than we had all feared, and that there was no need to rush into making unnecessary changes elsewhere.
PS wanted to reopen discussion on a local scale for CMS which would mean a pay cut for those with QTS and increases for unqualified instructors. The NUT reiterated its legal opinion that it would not be allowed to reduce the pay of those on UPS or to seek to pay qualified teachers, doing "specified work" on a contract with the LA, anything other than in accordance with the School Teachers' Pay and Conditions
PS claimed that the Authority was not accepting this, but they agreed they needed to check it out. We replied that it would have been a good idea to have checked the legality of the proposals before making them.
The waters are muddied by an agreement reached in Hertfordshire which does appear to ignore the legalities. PS's claims that Bedfordshire and Cambs are following Hertfordshire were shown to be at least premature - the NUT in both Authorities report that there have been no such proposals put forward, and that they would resist them as much as Suffolk NUT is doing.
Of course, if the service were to be privatised, or even if CMS became a "trust", then the contract would no longer be with the LA and the legal objections would fall. PS claimed that it was never the intention to assist privatisation, and he wanted to apply flexibility in order to stave off worse alternatives. He wants the CMS to stay within the LA sphere, but says he is having to respond to diktats from his political masters.
The NUT stated that our bottom line is that no one should find themselves losing pay - any attempt to cut the pay of CMS QTS tutors would be challenged. PS said that there would be some safeguarding, for three years - this would not alter the NUT's objections
We would resist with all the resources of the Union any attempt to cut the pay of UPS paid tutors. It would have to be a different matter with new appointments - the majority of new appointments are non-QTS anyway and we would assume that they would be quite happy to accept a pay increase. We would advise those with QTS not to apply for any post which was not paying teacher rates, but if they do, and are prepared to accept a non-teaching contract, then there is little we could do.
The earliest any contractual changes would take place is Sept 2009. Janet Wellings agreed to take back to the Authority our stance and suggestions that no current teacher with QTS should suffer a loss of pay and/or pension.
They also made a more immediate proposal: to pay all tutors on the same rate for mileage at 40p per mile for the first 10,000 and 25p per mile thereafter. Most tutors are already on 40p per mile, but some are on casual rate, which can pay up to 55.8p per mile. However, anything over 40p attracts deductions for tax (at at least 22%) and National Insurance (around 7%). The difference after these deductions is generally quite small. However, a few individuals will "lose" a few hundred pounds per year. Any losses would be mitigated altogether if the recipients pays a higher rate of tax than the standard.
None of the Unions could justify a differential and in principle support all tutors being paid travel at the teachers' travel rate, of 40p per mile. We therefore recommend that members accept this change, which could save a considerable amount for the CMS and brings all tutors into the same travel expenses payment system. If accepted, the change would take place from 1st May 2008.
No member has objected so we have reported to the LA that we agreed to the 40p mileage rate for all.
|Autumn Term||Wed 2 Sept - Fri 23 Oct 2009||38|
|Mon 2 Nov - Fri 18 Dec 2009||35|
|Spring Term||Mon 4 Jan - Fri 12 February 2010||30|
|Mon 22 Feb - Thur 1 Apr||29|
|Summer Term||Mon 19 April - Fri 28 May||29|
|Mon 7 June - Thur 22 July||34|
|Recommended PD Days:||Wed Sept 2nd and Thur July 22nd.|
|Meetings of the Division Council at 6.30 pm||
|Meetings of Secretaries, Treasurers and Membership Secretaries at 6.45 pm:||
Date of next meeting: March 13th (AGM) 2008