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Nadhim Zahawi offers teachers a NINE% pay rise in desperate bid to end strikes


Nadhim Zahawi blinked and bowed to militant teachers’ unions offering them a whopping 9% pay rise in a desperate bid to end the strike in the fall.

The Education Secretary appeared to back down from his stance last week that a strike would be ‘unforgivable’ as he pleaded with Rishi Sunak to fund a pay rise for 130,000 junior teachers in England.

But Mary Bousted, general secretary of the National Education Union (NEU), said it was “not good enough, it’s still a pay cut”. She told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “If we don’t get a much better offer we will be looking to vote for our members in October.”

The union leader added that even in the ‘best case scenario’ less than half of the new teachers Britain needs would start training in September.

It came after the NEU threatened to go on strike if the government did not increase its offer for most teachers. The teachers’ union NASUWT has also threatened to vote for industrial action in November if the salary increase this year falls below 12%.

Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi addressing the Local Government Association annual conference, at the Harrogate Convention Centre, North Yorkshire yesterday

Nadhim Zahawi offers teachers a NINE% pay rise in desperate bid to end strikes

Mary Bousted, NEU General Secretary, on ITV’s Peston show on June 22, 2022

Pupils face chaotic new results in exams strike after the country’s largest committee of testers voted in favor of the strikes

A-level and GCSE results could be delayed this summer after staff at the country’s biggest examination board, the AQA, voted in favor of strikes.

If grades are delayed, students may have to call universities to beg for their place or risk losing it.

Unison, which represents around 160 of AQA’s 1,200 employees, said the strike had 71% support. A participation threshold of 50%, necessary to win the votes for the strike, was also reached.

Many other AQA staff from the Unite union are also considering a strike.

Unison regional organizer Lizanne Devonport said: “The staff demonstrated that they were clearly unhappy with the way they were being treated.”

The AQA said pay increases would actually average 5.6% and were “higher than many organizations”.

It came as Royal Mail managers and more railway workers also voted to strike.

Avanti West Coast TSSA members voted in favor of the walkouts by 86% out of a 66% turnout. No strike date has been set in the wage dispute.

Unite said it would announce strike dates in the Royal Mail executive dispute in the coming days. He said the company plans to cut 542 delivery manager jobs.

Last week, Mr Zahawi said teachers’ unions going on strike after the disruptions students have faced during the pandemic would be “unforgivable” and “unfair”.

In March, the Education Secretary said unions should “show restraint” by agreeing to 3%.

But he is now believed to be the first Cabinet minister to have quizzed the Chancellor on his calls for wage moderation over fears inflation could be fueled by steep pay rises.

There are 130,000 teachers in England in the first five years of their career who would be affected by the proposed 9% rise.

An increase of 5% would be proposed for the remaining 380,000 teachers in England, instead of the initial figure planned by the government of 3%.

In a letter to the Education Secretary, the unions said: ‘You must respond to the new economic reality of double-digit inflation and the threat this poses to teachers’ living standards.

“We ask you to commit to an increase in inflation for all teachers.

“A clear and unambiguous signal that educators are valued, with undifferentiated salary increases for all teachers, is urgently needed. And you have to fund the schools accordingly.

A source told The Daily Telegraph: ‘Nadhim Zahawi has made it clear that the quality of teaching is the most important factor in a school for children’s outcomes and we need to make teaching an even more attractive profession.’

“Teachers deserve a pay rise and the government wants to prevent any strikes.”

Amid last week’s crippling rail strikes, Mr Zahawi wrote in the Daily Telegraph: ‘Young people have suffered more disruption than any generation that came before them.

“And to make this worse now, when the recovery is in full swing and families are considering their next big step after school or college, would be unforgivable and unfair.”

The NEU has criticized government evidence at the Schools Teachers Review Body proposing a 3 per cent pay rise for most teachers in England, which it says would mean a ‘huge’ pay cut on the basis of Wednesday’s inflation figures of 9.1% on the CPI measure. and 11.7% for RPI.

NEU Deputy General Secretary Niamh Sweeney told Sky News a teachers’ strike was “more likely than it has been in my 20 years in the profession”.

It comes after staff at the nation’s largest review board, the AQA, voted in favor of strikes.

Nadhim Zahawi offers teachers a NINE% pay rise in desperate bid to end strikes

Real household disposable income fell 0.2% between January and March, as income growth of 1.5% was outpaced by household inflation of 1.7%. This is the longest streak of drops since official figures began to be compiled in 1955.

Nadhim Zahawi offers teachers a NINE% pay rise in desperate bid to end strikes

HMRC figures showed almost two million people have been sucked into higher and additional tax rates over the past three years

If grades are delayed, students may have to call universities to beg for their place or risk losing it.

Unison, which represents about 160 of AQA’s 1,200 employees, said the strike had 71% support. A participation threshold of 50%, necessary to win the votes for the strike, was also reached.

Many other AQA staff from the Unite union are also considering a strike.

Unison regional organizer Lizanne Devonport said: “The staff demonstrated that they were clearly unhappy with the way they were being treated.”

The AQA said pay increases would actually average 5.6% and were “higher than many organizations”.

It came as Royal Mail managers and more railway workers also voted to strike.

Avanti West Coast TSSA members voted in favor of the walkouts by 86% out of a 66% turnout. No strike date has been set in the wage dispute.

Unite said it would announce strike dates in the Royal Mail executive dispute in the coming days. He said the company plans to cut 542 delivery manager jobs.

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