Nearly a third of teachers believe performance-related pay system has not been introduced, poll finds

Nearly a third of teachers believe their school has not introduced performance-related pay despite it being a statutory requirement for more than two years, an exclusive YouGov poll for TES shows.

Teachers’ pay rises are all supposed to be awarded by headteachers according to their level of performance, rather than time served.

By law, performance-related pay (PRP) systems – which allow teachers’ pay to progress only if targets set by schools are met – should have been in place since September 2013. But according to the YouGov survey of teachers, 31 per cent say their school has not introduced PRP, with a further 17 per cent stating that they “don’t know” if it has.

The remaining 52 per cent of the representative sample of 758 teachers said their school did have a PRP system in place.

But unions argue that the findings may reflect teachers’ lack of knowledge about their school’s pay policy, rather than whether PRP has been introduced.

Sara Ford, a pay specialist for the Association of School and College Leaders, said she found it hard to believe that any school would not implement performance-related pay. She said that not only was PRP statutory but “Ofsted now expects schools to identify between low and high performers in their budget”.

The YouGov poll does reveal a marked discrepancy between headteachers and classroom teachers as to whether or not they think PRP operates in their school. Nearly all (98 per cent) of the headteachers polled said the system had been introduced for their staff, but only 42 per cent of classroom teachers gave the same response.

Classroom-teacher unions, which have circulated information on performance-related pay for years, were shocked by the figures.

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