October 2023 pay update

Following our consultation on the Sixth Form Employers pay offer, the overwhelming majority (over 90%) of members who responded were prepared to accept the 6.5% pay offer.

This includes a 6.5% increase for those on the leadership pay scale, for London allowances and responsibility payments. Point one of the scale will go up by 8.44%, so the starting salary will be £30,500. 

We met with the other recognised unions and collectively responded to the employers accepting the offer, albeit with some reluctance given the below-inflation level of the offer. 

A majority of members were not in agreement that commitments by the Sixth Form College Association (SFCA) would be enough to tackle the workload situation, however 40% believed they were a step in the right direction.

We will continue to press on these issues. Members have been asked to complete a workload survey in order to inform our negotiations with the SFCA.

September 2023 pay update

Unions met with the Sixth Form College Association (SFCA) to receive the employers’ pay offer for the academic year 2023/24.

Following receipt of the staff side pay claim and pay consultation with the NJC employers’ side, the following pay offer has been made:

  • an increase of 8.44% on main scale point one, to a starting salary of £30,500 and an increase of 6.5% on all other main pay scale points, points 2-9;

  • a 6.5% increase for all teachers including those on the leadership pay scale;

  • a 6.5% increase on all relevant allowances, including London and fringe allowances.

The offer includes a commitment to a working party with the staff side to engage with our concerns around teacher workload and working time. This could include a survey of working time in colleges and consideration of the outcomes of the DfE workload reduction taskforce for schools. Please note that this is not a commitment to adopt the outcomes of the workload task force.

Following concerns raised by the NASUWT last year, the employer’s side further proposed to continue discussions around London pay comparability.  You may be aware that the London allowance for sixth-form college teachers is considerably lower than the London school teachers’ pay scale.

Sixth-form college teachers are asked to complete a consultation on this offer which will be sent by email. The full offer is available on the right/below.

College funding

You will be aware that following the increased pay offer to school teachers in July, the Government committed to £185 million in funding for 2023/24 and a further £285 million for 2024/25. The amount each college will receive per student has been increased from £4,642 to £4,753.

While this is a welcome increase in funding, we will still be campaigning for an increase in 16-19 funding, as the education sector is affected most by the austerity cuts implemented since 2010.

Crisis in sixth-form college funding

We have called out the crisis in sixth-form college funding to Education Secretary Gillian Keegan.

The poor funding situation of the 16-19 sector, including sixth forms, was recently described by the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS) report.

This stated that colleges and sixth forms ‘have seen larger cuts since 2010’ than other sectors in education and ‘have not received extra funding to deal with larger-than-expected cost increases and rising student numbers’.

Student numbers are predicted to increase by 200,000 by 2030. We further highlighted the recruitment challenge now present in sixth forms, recognised by the Sixth Form Colleges Association (SFCA) in their recent annual report.

Do you have an NASUWT Representative at your college?

If you do not have an NASUWT Representative in your college, this is an opportunity to elect a Workplace Representative or a team of Workplace Representatives.

Email the Sixth Form Ballot inbox if you or your colleagues wish to become a Rep or form a Reps Team and for further details of your Regional Centre.

Please note that our recent ballot only included colleges where our members are subject to Sixth Form College Association pay scales and terms of conditions of employment. These are available on our Sixth-form Pay Scales page.

Sixth-form pay negotiations

On 7 March, the Sixth Form Colleges Association (SFCA) came to agreement on a joint statement with the teachers’ unions on the staff side of the National Joint Council (NJC).

The SFCA statement recommends that colleges uprate teachers’ pay by the amount offered in September 2022, but recognises that the pay dispute has not been resolved.

Please see the agreed statement and the pay framework on the right/below.

The NASUWT continues to fight for a restorative pay rise for sixth-form college teachers and improved funding for the sector. Please see attached correspondence from the General Secretary to the Secretary of State highlighting the crisis in funding in sixth-form colleges.

Sixth Form Colleges Association pay offer

In September, the Sixth Form Colleges Association offered the increases below:

Point 1 8.9%
Point 2 8%
Point 3 7%
Point 4 6.5%
Point 5 5.5%
Point 6 5%
Point 7 5%
Point 8 5%
Point 9 5%
Allowances 5%

The majority of sixth-form college teachers would receive 5%.

This is not acceptable in the current cost-of-living crisis and in the context of a 20% pay cut since 2010.


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