Sixth form colleges - pay background

Pay and progression framework for sixth form colleges from September 2015

In November 2014, a new pay and progression framework was agreed (subject to formal ratification) by the unions and the employers in the sixth form college (SFC) sector.

ATL strongly supports the retention of a national pay framework for teachers in SFCs which will continue to provide for national pay scales with established pay points, and which will restore competitiveness with the schools sector at the minimum and maximum of the scales. However, there will now be a need to produce detailed provisions to implement the proposed framework.

ATL consulted its representatives in SFCs and surveyed all its members. The consultation revealed a strong majority in favour, although there were concerns the impact of the revised framework should not be to reduce rates of pay progression for teachers and thereby reduce pay levels in SFCs.

Although the employers have made a commitment that the framework has not been designed with the intention of reducing rates of pay progression, ATL will be seeking to ensure the revised national agreement and accompanying guidance should continue to emphasise this message to colleges and contain appropriate safeguards.

The use of appraisal in relation to pay progression was another area of concern for members. We will, therefore, be seeking an agreed model policy on appraisal in sixth form colleges, available for colleges' use alongside the existing agreed performance management framework document and the revised Teachers' Standards to be introduced under the agreement.

The framework awaits final ratification by the National Joint Council for staff in sixth form colleges, and it is the employers' intention it starts in September 2015, allowing for progression and transfer to the new pay scales in September 2016.

Proposal by SFCA to change the national pay, progression and conditions framework

ATL has consulted reps (and members in colleges with no current rep) on the proposal by the Sixth Form Colleges Association (SFCA) to change the national pay, progression and conditions framework. The trade unions and the SFCA are now consulting with their respective members on the proposal. ATL believes that the proposal has raised fundamental issues that members now need to consider and help steer ATL's position.

September 2014 pay increased accepted

ATL and the joint unions have accepted the Sixth Form Colleges Association offer of a 1% increase on all points and allowances from 1 September 2014.

Up-to-date pay scales can be found here.

September 2013 pay increased accepted

ATL and the joint unions have accepted the Sixth Form Colleges Association offer of a pay increase of 1% on all scale points and allowances from September 2013.

ATL's decision followed a consultation of representatives who were unanimously in favour of acceptance. A joint union statement has been published.

The unions and the SFCA have agreed to establish a joint working party to consider wider issues relating to pay parity and the pay framework in sixth form colleges. The working party will look at a range of factors including:

  • recruitment and retention data
  • current labour market trends
  • the issue of pay levels and conditions of service in comparator groups
  • the relationship between pay and performance in the sixth form colleges pay structure
  • the financial and economic context.

The working party will convene and conclude its discussions in time to inform pay negotiations in 2014, and ATL representatives will have the opportunity to discuss the relevant issues at a meeting in London on 27 November.

Need further advice?

Your first point of contact is your ATL rep in your school or college. Your local ATL branch is also available to help with queries, or you can contact ATL's member advisors on tel: 020 7930 6441 or email us. Please have your membership number to hand when telephoning and include it with any correspondence - this will help us to answer your query more quickly.

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