Michele Gregson, NSEAD General Secretary, sent this letter to all Trade Union members on Thursday 15 September 2022

Dear NSEAD Trade Union members,

You may well be aware that within the education sector, there has been much recent commentary about the potential for future industrial action.

The STRB (School Teachers Review Body), the independent body tasked with providing the government with advice as to the annual Teachers Pay Award, made a recommendation for a pay award that is higher than it has been for teachers in recent times. The UK Government has set the 2022 pay award with increases of between 5% and 8.9%. This has been rejected by the education trade unions, including NSEAD. A consultation on the Secretary of State’s response to the STRB Report closes on 23 September 2022. Following that date, the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document (STPCD), including the 2022/23 teachers’ pay points, will be published by the Department for Education (DfE). An increase of 5% has been offered to teachers in Wales and Northern Ireland.

These pay awards are still far below the level of inflation, currently at 9.9% at the time of writing. The pay award can only be described as a real terms pay cut.

Teachers have been lauded throughout the pandemic for the extraordinary efforts and sacrifices they have made, yet the pay award feels for many in education like scant reward for stepping up for the country in such difficult circumstances.

NSEAD has been engaging with the TUC alongside other education unions in recent weeks in the desire and expectation that a consensus regarding strategy in response to the below inflation pay award can be agreed.

Our message to you is unequivocal: any decisions we make regarding industrial action will pursue the will of NSEAD members. We will not be driven by ideological argument, but we will be listening to and will be responsive to the clear direction that NSEAD members provide us. This is our pledge and our promise to you, our members.

To support NSEAD Trade Union members, we will be communicating more frequently, so you are kept fully informed of developments. We will also be updating a FAQ page on the main NSEAD website, where we will post all questions that you pose about industrial action, the pay award and how it affects you. Additionally, members will also be given the opportunity to meet with the General Secretary and Principal Case Worker at online meetings throughout the Autumn term, with the first meeting on 22 September.

At this time it is vital that we have up to date contact details for you – you can log on to our new member portal to check and update your details or call the office on 01225 810134.

You can find all the information you need about industrial action and how it might affect you by visiting the Trade Union section of our website.

Best wishes,

Michele Gregson

General Secretary