05 June 2018
Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner has told GMB conference that Labour will reinstate the School Support Staff Negotiating Body to put an end to “poverty wages” at schools.
Because academies are allowed to set their own wages, many school staff are paid the minimum wage – with teaching assistants earning just £12,134 on average in 2017 – while bosses take home £150,000 salaries.
Former Education Secretary Michael Gove abolished School Support Staff Negotiating Bodies, which had been set up by the previous Labour government to set national terms and conditions for support staff.
Speaking at the conference, Angela Rayner said: “National pay settlements will apply to every school that is funded through our National Education Service.
“There will be no more race to the bottom in our schools, and we will end the scandal of teaching assistants on the minimum wage.”
She also promised that Labour would institute a maximum pay ratio in schools as part of wider public sector reform.
Karen Leonard, GMB National Officer for Schools, said: “We welcome this much-needed pledge from Labour to stop the kind of academy penny-pinching which sees our dedicated and professional school support staff struggling to get by.
“Ultimately, it’s our children who will suffer if school staff aren’t paid properly.”