NEWSLETTER - MARCH 2005
PAY - YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED
Or How You Keep Paying the Price of Workforce Reform
What Changes Will There Be To My Pay This Year?
1. In April, we get a 2.5% rise on the Main Spine and on the Leadership Spine. This follows a year in which the cost of living has risen by around 3.2%.
2. Management Allowances have already been frozen in value for a year, and will continue to be frozen this April.
3. The top two points on the Upper Pay Spine have been abolished, reducing what can potentially be earned on it by £2,376 a year.
4. Management Allowances will be abolished at the end of 2005, and replaced by a system of payments intended to cost less.
5. More than 7,000 teachers, according to the Government’s own figures, will progressively lose the existing safeguarding of their salaries from the end of this year, and teachers losing Management Allowances in the new shake-up will only have time-limited protection.
6. All those teachers who lose safeguarding and don’t retire within three years will have
their pensions reduced unless they get further promotion.
Can They Really Take My Management Allowance Away?
Yes, if we let them
The Government’s plan is that a new system of Teaching and Learning responsibility payments will replace Management Allowances from January 1st 2006. There are two types. The three criteria required for the one of lower value are
* impact on educational progress beyond the teacher’s assigned pupils;
* leading, developing and enhancing the teaching practice of others; and
* having accountability for leading, managing and developing a subject or curriculum area or pupil development across the curriculum;
and for the upper value TLR, the three above plus
* having line management responsibility for a significant number of people.
Each school has to create a new structure of such posts, and you may or may not get one.
1. You may have particular difficulty if you have a Management Allowance 1, because the minimum value of the new TLRs is £612 more than this, and there is no extra money provided – in fact the Government expects less money to be spent.
2. You may also have a difficulty if you have a pastoral or administrative post, or you are a one-person department – have a good look at those criteria again.
3. You may be aware that these changes are taking place when primaries have to find the money to fund 10% PPA time. Does that make you feel more secure?
So what if I don’t get one of these new posts?
Your salary will be protected in cash terms for three years from January 2006. Then you revert to your position on the Main Scale/UPS
What About The Protected Salary I’ve Had For Years?
You mean the Management Allowance or Head’s Salary you kept after a reorganisation, or your SPA Allowance, or any other kind of payment that’s no longer in the system? If you do have any of these, they will all be phased out by December 2008.
Can They Really Do That?
Yes, if we let them.
This is another fine mess. Who got us into it?
Who is Responsible?
The idea came from something called the Rewards and Incentives Group. Among its members are ATL, NASUWT, PAT, SHA and NAHT. They worked on these ideas with employers and the Government.
The following had nothing to do with them: NUT, UCAC
The National Union of Teachers recognises that these proposals are yet another kick in the teeth for hundreds of thousands of hardworking teachers, and with your help we will oppose them.
DON'T BE BACKED INTO A CORNER OVER PPA TIME
From September 2005 all teachers will be entitled to Preparation and Planning Time amounting to 10% of the time they are normally available for teaching. Schools should now be planning how this time is to be provided.
Following the training organised by Education Bradford, some headteachers are asking staff to come up with ideas for providing PPA time within existing resources. But PPA time cannot, and should not, be provided within existing resources. It must have cost implications if it is to be done properly, in a way that will really reduce the workload of teachers. And there should be more money in the budgets of most schools this year.
Don’t be backed into a corner over PPA time. It will cost money, and although there is nothing wrong with teachers being consulted, it is the Head’s responsibility to organise it, not ours.
We will be sending out more information about this issue early next term.
FIGHTING RACISM IN SCHOOLS
Two important documents have recently gone into schools from Education Bradford.
One reminds schools of the necessity to report all incidents of a racist nature. Schools must make the Alleged Racist Incident Forms freely available so that teachers may easily and conveniently complete them.
The following are examples of racist behaviour which should be recorded on the form:
* Ridiculing an individual for cultural differences
* Making racist comments
* Refusal to co-operate with other people because of their ethnic origin
* Derogatory name-calling, insults or racist jokes
* Racist graffiti
* Wearing racist badges or insignia
* Bringing racist materials, such as leaflets or magazines into school
* Incitement to others to behave in a racist way
* Attempts to recruit people into racist organisations
* Verbal abuse and threats
* Physical assault because of colour or ethnicity
The other document contains advice about dealing with issues of race which may be highlighted during the forthcoming general election campaign. There will be a focus during the campaign on immigration, refugees and asylum seekers and it is likely that this will be reflected in pupils’ attitudes. The document also contains useful website addresses.
HAZARD WARNING ON COMPUTER
Union Health and Safety Reps, when visiting schools, are finding that the effort schools are putting into alerting staff to the hazard of computer projectors is very patchy. Some schools have provided proper training, while at others it has not been mentioned.
The following is advice from the Health and Safety Executive. It is important to say that the use of computer projectors is perfectly safe so long as proper guidelines are adhered to.
Proper risk assessments and safe working practices need to be adopted in order to avoid exposing the eye to excessive levels of illumination which could cause damage. The HSE guidance, which should be heeded by both teachers and pupils, states that staring directly into the projector beam should be avoided at all times.
Standing facing into the beam should be avoided. Users, especially pupils and students, should try to keep their backs to the beam as much as possible.
In this regard, the use of a stick or laser pointer to avoid the need for the user to enter the beam is recommended.
Pupils and students should be adequately supervised when they are asked to point out something on the screen. Schools should also try to ensure that projectors are located out of the sight line from the screen to the audience; this ensures that, when presenters look at the audience, they do not also have to stare at the projector lamp. The best way to achieve this is by ceiling-mounting rather than floor or table-mounting the projector. In order to minimise the lamp power needed to project a visible presentation, schools should use room blinds to reduce ambient light levels.
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