ANGELA RAYNER TELLS GMB CONGRESS LABOUR WILL STOP ACADEMY CHAINS PAYING POVERTY WAGES
GMB members in academy schools often live off scraps while bosses pocket £150,000 salaries
Shadow Education secretary Angela Rayner told GMB delegates Labour will prevent academy chains paying poverty wages.
The MP for Ashton-Under-Lyne made the announcement at GMB’s 101st Annual Congress in Brighton this week.
Under current rules, academies are able to set their own pay scales - meaning school staff are often paid poverty wages while chief execs get whopping six figure salaries.
The School Support Staff Negotiating Body, which was created by the previous Labour government to set national terms and conditions for support staff, was abolished by then Education Secretary Michael Gove with the aim of de-regulating pay and allowing individual employers to set their own rates.
According to the ONS, teaching assistants earned just £12,134 on average in 2017.
Labour has pledged to reinstate the School Support Staff Negotiating Body, and in her speech to GMB Public Services Conference, Angela Rayner announced that she would apply national terms and conditions to all schools within Labour's National Education Service as a condition of public funding.
The policy would go alongside a requirement to follow a maximum pay ratio in the public sector, tackling big business-style pay packages among some academy trust chiefs.
Angela Rayner, Labour's Shadow Secretary of State for Education, said:
“I want to announce today that the Labour Party will bring back genuine national pay in education. Not just for the teachers but for other educators too.
“We will reinstate the School Support Staff Negotiating Body.
“And we will go further.
“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.”
Karen Leonard, GMB National Officer for Schools, said:
“GMB members in academy schools are often paid poverty wages while bosses pocket £150,000 salaries.
“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.”
Contact: GMB Press office 07958 156846 firstname.lastname@example.org