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Written Statement - The Future of Teachers’ Pay and Conditions

Kirsty Williams, Cabinet Secretary for Education

The responsibility to determine teachers’ pay will give the Welsh Ministers the ability to deliver a pay and conditions system more relevant to Wales, alongside our fundamental changes to the wider education system– including the reforms to Initial Teacher Education (ITE) and the implementation of curriculum reform.

The ability to develop and deliver, alongside our partners in local authorities and the profession, the full remuneration package available for the teaching profession in Wales will underpin our future aspirations for the education system as a whole.

Building on previous and on-going dialogue with unions and other partners, we will ensure an appropriate system is put in place to determine teachers’ pay and conditions. For this reason, in the New Year I intend to hold a public consultation on the process.

As part of this work I will establish an Independent Task and Finish Group that will be chaired by Professor Mick Waters to review Teachers’ Pay and Conditions in Wales.

Professor Waters will undertake the review assisted by Professor Melanie Jones and Sir Alasdair Macdonald.

The main focus of this review is to consider how the pay and conditions structure contributes to a highly motivated teaching profession and strengthens the delivery of a high quality education system.

Developing a high-quality teaching profession and creating inspirational leaders to help raise standards are key objectives of our new national education plan – Education in Wales: Our National Mission.

The group will review the current arrangements for teachers pay and conditions and consider the benefit and barriers of the current system and where specific policy consideration should be given to address issues.

The group will report with recommendations to Welsh Ministers by autumn 2018, and these recommendations will help inform the remit for future Pay and Conditions discussions. I expect to implement our Wales-specific Pay and Conditions system from September 2019.

I have been clear – and welcome the support I have received – that being tied to the England system is no longer appropriate, relevant or to the advantage of the profession in Wales. Our system is based on the values of equity and excellence, a commitment to inclusive, public service education and to supporting our teachers to raise standards for all. Our Pay and Conditions system will enshrine these approaches and values.