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Theresa May accused of insulting teachers as pay rise is held at 1%

Theresa May accused of insulting teachers as pay rise is held at 1%

Theresa May has been accused of insulting teachers by offering them a 1% pay rise after she refused to bow to pressure from some Tory MPs, Labour and trade unions to begin easing the public sector wage cap.

The Department for Education said it would accept the recommendation of a 1% pay rise made by the independent pay review body, after an open revolt by some senior cabinet ministers who said the seven-year cap should be lifted.

Labour said the government was causing a recruitment crisis in schools by holding down pay, while the award was described as "an insult" by the Liberal Democrats. Teachers' unions said that salaries will have fallen 15% behind inflation since 2010.

Pressure is now building on May and the chancellor Philip Hammond to announce a review of public sector pay in the autumn budget.

Some Tory MPs had been concerned it would look unfair to nurses and NHS workers, who got only a 1% rise in pay in the spring, if the government had been more generous to teachers, police and prison officers only after suffering a poor election result.

But some are making the case for Hammond to announce a change in the 1% pay policy - set out in a remit letter to pay review bodies - in the autumn, boosting the wages of public sector workers halfway through the year.

Pressure is compounded by the recent increases in inflation, which rose by 2.9% in the 12 months to July, adding to the impact in real terms.

Analysis of official figures shows that more than 27,500 teachers who trained between 2011 and 2015 had already left the job by last year. It means that just over 23% of about 117,000 teachers who qualified over the period have left.

Source: The Guardian

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