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Commenting on today’s release of the Taylor Review into Modern Working Practices, the NASUWT has expressed great disappointment at its failure to address the ongoing exploitation of thousands of UK supply teachers by many employment agencies, whose practices continue to deny them access to their deserved employment rights and fair levels of pay.

Despite acknowledging that a lack of regulatory enforcement was enabling unscrupulous employers to get away with abuse, discrimination and unfair working practices, the Review surprisingly does not recommend government intervention.

In a recent NASUWT survey of UK supply teachers conducted in May 2017, more than 40% reported that although they were employed to perform duties as a qualified teacher, they were only offered unqualified rates of pay.

This is on top of being denied access to rights such as sick pay, training and annual leave and, in many cases, being forced to pay a payroll fee and fund their employer‘s National Insurance contributions as well as their own.

Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said:

“This report signally fails to address the misery, woeful treatment and exploitation experienced by thousands of supply teachers working for agencies. It is a huge missed opportunity, only compounded by the suggestion that there is no need for the Government to act.

“While new ways of working and employing people are constantly being created, exploitation is as old as the hills. The test for all these recommendations must be whether they effectively tackle exploitation and prevent those who would engage in it from being able to do so.

“The failure to truly address this issue, especially in school environments, is not only leading to many great teachers being driven out of the profession, but is all the more shocking given the Review’s suggestion that teachers need to take greater responsibility for educating young people for the future world of work.

“The Government must act immediately and take direct action to strengthen the enforcement of the Agency Workers Regulations if it is to genuinely deliver fairness at work for agency workers. It must also set out a coherent strategy that secures the rights of all workers.”

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