Union boss warns over teacher pay gap

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A WIDENING pay gap between teaching and other professions is risking the quality of education in this country, according to a union leader.

New research published today by the NASUWT shows that a gap in salary between teachers and some other graduate careers has widened since 2010.

It also found that the 2013 average starting salary for graduates among major recruiters was nearly 20 per cent higher than the national starting point for a qualified teacher.

Analysis by Income Data Services also found that the difference between graduates and other careers had widened to 44 per cent and by five years the difference was 73 per cent.

Chris Keates, NASUWT general secretary said: “Teaching has moved from being the number one choice for graduates in 2010 to one now where graduates are increasingly looking to other higher paid professions.

“There is already a recruitment and retention crisis in the education service.

“The stark differences in graduate pay highlighted in our research will unfortunately mean this crisis will worsen.

“Children and young people are entitled to be taught by qualified teachers who are recognised and rewarded as highly-skilled professionals.

“The widening pay gap between teaching and other graduate professions is putting children’s entitlement to a high-quality education at risk.”

The report uses full-time basic weekly earnings data from the Office for National Statistics and compares teachers’ salaries with those in areas of science, research, engineering and technology, health, legal, business, and administrative professions.

The NASUWT submitted the research as part of its evidence to the School Teachers’ Review Body.