Mark Whitehead 20 June 2017

Council publishes new pay offer to teaching assistants

Proposals aimed at ending a long-running dispute with teaching assistants in Durham could mean more than three quarters of the staff being given a pay rise.

The proposed settlement, arrived at by a joint council and union board set up after a series of strikes last year, could also mean one in five of the staff facing a pay cut after two years.

Councillors are due to approve the plan this week which will involve new pay grades following a review of roles and responsibilities.

Unions representing the staff are expected to ballot their members on whether to accept it.

The council’s corporate director of resources John Hewitt, said: ‘The outcome of this work is that the vast majority of teaching assistants will see an improvement in their financial position.

‘No-one has had their pay reduced at this stage and the proposals will ensure that no teaching assistant will see any reduction during the two-year compensation period if they work the hours offered.

‘We also recognise that there will still be some TAs who may see a reduction once that two year compensatory period is over, and we will therefore continue to work with the unions with a real focus on this group.

‘Together we will look at a wide range of workforce development options to see if we can provide some further opportunities for career progression.’

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