Why COSLA & the Scottish Government need to #PayAttention

Created on: 30 May 2022

COSLA and the Scottish Government need to #PayAttention as:

1. Cost-of-living crisis

Inflation is soaring with many teachers already suffering the effects of rising fuel and food prices.  Teachers did not cause the cost-of-living crisis. They need a pay increase to avoid the damage that it will do to their incomes.

2. Teachers are dedicated professionals

Teachers delivered heroically during the pandemic as essential workers. They never stopped providing education for our young people during lockdowns or when schools re-opened and Covid safety was a serious concern.

3. Excessive workload is worse than ever

Ever-increasing demands and expectations from all directions but fewer and fewer resources in schools, mean that rather than teaching being an attractive and deeply fulfilling profession, excessive workload is causing burn-out and turning good people off teaching.   Teachers need to be fairly rewarded for the work that they do, and workload needs to be tackled.

4. COSLA is playing politics with teachers’ pay

COSLA is seeking to hold down teachers' pay by side-lining sectoral bargaining and linking our pay increase to that of workers in other bargaining groups whose employment is completely different from that of teachers– COSLA’s ‘One Workforce’ agenda in reality undermines genuine negotiation and imposes pay restraint.  Previously, COSLA has deliberately dragged out the pay negotiations, as a way of preventing any momentum or pressure being built up.  We can see through these delaying tactics. COSLA needs to stop playing politics and play its part to invest more in education and in teachers.

5. Gender pay equity for teachers

Teaching is a majority female profession.  Pay decline and depression are impacting on teachers relative to other graduate professions and contributing to the overall gender pay gap, which Scotland has stated a commitment to ending. Teachers want to see gender pay justice for the profession delivered.

6. Schools need teachers

Teachers' pay needs to attract the best graduates to allow schools to provide quality education, alleviate the effects of poverty and give every young person a good and equal chance to thrive.  Teachers' pay needs to add up, if it is to help boost teacher numbers.