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The Government is falling short of its promised investment in education recovery by offering pupils catch up on the cheap and squeezing out and undermining skilled and qualified supply teachers.

The NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union is warning that the lack of clarity over the rates of pay for tutors working as part of the National Tutoring Programme (NTP) threatens to undermine the ability of supply teachers to obtain work at a level of pay that reflects their status as qualified teachers. This is further exacerbated by the fact that some providers are recruiting volunteers to act as tutors.

Dr Patrick Roach, NASUWT General Secretary, said:

“We need a teacher-led education recovery and renewal in order to secure the best outcomes for children and young people from the disruption of the last 18 months.

“Supply teachers, with their wealth of experience and knowledge, have enormous potential to successfully help children and young people catch up and recover their learning and yet ministers are encouraging schools to make use of a tutoring programme which gives no guarantees that children will be taught by qualified teachers or over the pay those tutors will receive.

“Children and young people deserve better than catch up on the cheap. Ministers can and should take action to ensure that all tutors are fully qualified and remunerated at the commensurate rate on the national pay scale and that supply teachers are part of the plan for education recovery.”

Jane Peckham, NASUWT Deputy General Secretary, who will be addressing the NASUWT’s Supply Teacher Consultation Conference this Saturday, said:

“Ministers have serially failed to take action to address the exploitative practices of many supply teacher agencies which often fail to provide supply teachers with the pay rates and contractual rights they are entitled to.

“During the pandemic many supply teachers have been hit with a double blow of a lack of both employment opportunities and access to furlough pay.

“Without guarantees on remuneration or the qualifications of its personnel, the NTP risks further entrenching downward pressure on rates of pay and undermining employment opportunities for supply teachers.”

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