Scottish Secondary Teachers’ Association votes to accept pay deal

Written by Gemma Fraser on 21 February 2019 in News

The result from the EIS ballot is still to come in, meaning strike action remains an option

Image credit: Holyrood

A union representing secondary school teachers in Scotland has voted to accept the renewed pay offer after months of negotiations.

Members of the Scottish Secondary Teachers’ Association (SSTA) voted in a ballot, with 64 per cent agreeing to accept it.

But the result from members of Scotland’s largest teaching union, the EIS, has yet to be announced, meaning that industrial action is not yet ruled out.

SSTA said 76 per cent of its members voted in the pay ballot, adding that many teachers were “reluctant” to accept the offer but did so because they were “desperate” for a pay rise.

Its general secretary, Seamus Searson, said: “The government must not see this decision as a boost to teacher morale as many members were voting to get a pay rise that has been long overdue.

“Members are equally unhappy with a three-year deal and are insisting on a reopener clause for 2020 so that teachers’ salaries are not allowed to deteriorate.

Members are demanding urgent efforts to address teacher workload and support in dealing with pupil behaviour.

“The SSTA welcomes the measures to improve salaries for those entering the profession but has real a concern that this offer is going to do little to encourage teachers to remain in the profession.

“The government must accept there is much more to be done in the battle of teacher retention. The large number of teachers who were prepared to take strike action to improve teachers’ pay shows the level of frustration and must not be ignored.”

Kevin Campbell, SSTA president, said: “A 76 per cent return is a tremendous achievement.

“Looking at the responses from members it is clear there is a great reluctance amongst members to accept the offer but many teachers are desperate for a pay rise.

“Despite this pay offer there is still a great deal of teacher unhappiness in our schools. We need to move quickly in tackling teacher workload and reinvesting in measures to tackle the increasing problem of pupil behaviour.”



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