New teachers’ hourly rate ‘just 10% above minimum wage’

At a pre-conference briefing in central London this morning, joint general secretary Kevin Courtney said some teachers in London couldn’t afford new clothes and were turning to charity shops.“Some of them are not in a place where they can afford to buy new clothes,” he said, adding that “many of them” were living at home with their parents. 

Mr Courtney said: “There are newly qualified teachers who tell us they’ve worked out how many hours they’ve worked in a week, and they’ve divided that by the amount of pay they get per week, and they’ve come up with numbers which show they are slightly – only around 10 per cent – above the minimum wage with their hourly rates. Some are working more than 54 hours a week.”

The NEU teaching union annual conference will also address issues including schools funding, privatisation of education, pay and conditions of supply teachers, workload, T levels, recruitment and retention, teacher mental health and climate change.

The national minimum wage is currently £7.70 per hour for 21- to 24 year-olds, and £8.21 per hour for over-25s.