12/09/2013

O'Dowd Could Fast-Track Teachers' Incremental Pay

Education Minister, John O'Dowd, has said he will move to fast-track the payment of teachers' incremental pay awards.

The date for teachers' incremental progression each year is 1 September, but no agreement has been formally reached between employers and unions on a 2013/14 pay award.

As a result, there is a possibility that the incremental pay awards could be indefinitely delayed.

Minister O'Dowd has now taken steps to ensure teachers receive the pay increments they are entitled to at the earliest possible stage.

Mr O'Dowd explained: "Normally when a pay agreement is outstanding, the pay remit for that group of staff cannot be submitted until the pay award has been agreed with trade union side.

"However, my officials have been examining ways of bringing about a speedy resolution to this issue.

"As there is still no indication as to when negotiations on a pay award will be concluded, my Department will progress obtaining approval of incremental progression by 'separating' this element from the 'pay award' element of the pay remit.

"The timeframe involved does not enable payment of the incremental progression to be made in September. It is hoped that the necessary approvals will be in place to allow for the payment to be made in October. I recognize the massive contribution teachers make to our education system. I am acting to ensure they get what they are entitled to with minimum delay."

(JP/CD)

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