Teachers promised £2,400 bonus by Labour to cap ‘mass resignations’
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Labour has announced plans to give qualifying teachers a £2,400 bonus to cap ‘mass resignations’ in the sector. The incentive - costed at £50m - will hope to improve retention rates for teachers in the early stages of their career.
On July 2, Shadow education secretary Bridget Phillipson announced the package is aimed at teachers who are taking part in a training programme known as the Early Career Framework. Teachers who stay on and complete the two-year course will receive the £2,400 bonus.
Ms Phillipson said: “A good retention plan is the best recruitment plan: that is why Labour will bring in qualified teacher status, simplify the complex incentive payments system and reform the Early Career Framework to ensure that every classroom has a world-class teacher.”
Teacher vacancies have doubled in the past two years and government figures show almost one in five teachers who qualified in 2020 have since quit the profession. Labour said it intends to “re-establish teaching as a profession that is respected and valued as a skilled job” and believes these reforms will lead to “world-class teaching for every child”.
The planned reform is welcomed by Paul Whiteman, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT), but said Labour needs to ‘go further’.
“We know that issues such as uncompetitive pay and a punitive inspection system are key factors in pushing people out of the profession, and it is only by tackling these that we will see teaching and school leadership become an attractive proposition once again,” Mr Whiteman said.
A study from the National Education Union (NEU) in 2022 found that 44% of teachers had planned to leave the profession by 2027. Those in the classroom cited ‘heavy workload’ and ‘rising class sizes’.