Ethnic minority teachers are more likely to miss out on pay rises, survey suggests

Teachers who are black or ethnic minority (BME) are more likely to have missed out on a pay rise this school year, a survey suggests.

More than two thirds (67 per cent) of BME staff have still not received, or had confirmed, the 1 per cent cost-of-living award recommended from September, compared with 57 per cent of all teachers who responded, according to figures from the NASUWT teaching union.

The results of the pay survey, of more than 6,700 members (article free to subscribers) conducted in November, show that a fifth of BME teachers do not believe they were treated fairly in their performance review, compared with 16 per cent of all teachers.

Chris Keates, NASUWT general secretary, said: “These results confirm that there is widespread discrimination against teachers with protected characteristics including BME teachers, older teachers and those with a disability.”

The survey found that 15 per cent of BME teachers believe they have experienced discrimination, compared with 10 per cent of all teachers. Teachers with disabilities (25 per cent) and those aged 50-plus (11 per cent) are also more likely to feel they have been unfairly treated.

“The NASUWT predicted that increased managerial discretion over pay would increase unfairness and discrimination. It is therefore appalling that in its submission to the review body, the government is seeking further flexibility and discretion over teachers’ pay decisions. This will simply embed injustice and inequality into the pay system,” Ms Keates said.

Headteachers’ unions and the Department for Education have warned schools to be careful not to discriminate against particular groups of teachers as national salary scales disappear and performance-related pay is introduced.

DfE advice says that heads should “maintain records of decisions and recommendations made, demonstrating that all decisions are made objectively, fairly and in compliance with equalities legislation”.

For more on this story, see the 8 January edition of TES. Subscribers can view the story here. To download the digital edition, Android users can click here and iOS users can click here

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