Supply Teachers: Pay

Department for Education written question – answered at on 23 October 2023.

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Photo of Stephen Morgan Stephen Morgan Shadow Minister (Defence) (Armed Forces and Defence Procurement), Shadow Minister (Transport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment she has made of the adequacy of pay for supply teachers employed through education recruitment agencies.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

Schools have the freedom to make staffing decisions that meet their circumstances. This means schools, academies and Local Authorities are responsible for the recruitment of their workforces, including whether to use supply agencies for supply staff.

If a supply teacher is employed by a private employment agency, the agency can decide their salary. As this is a commercial arrangement between the school or Local Authority and the agency, the Department is unable to intervene in matters concerning the terms of their employment or their pay. Supply teachers are free to register with multiple agencies to find the best pay and conditions to meet their own circumstances.

Under the Agency Workers Regulations, an agency supply teacher is entitled to receive the same pay and conditions of employment as teachers employed by the school or the Local Authority after 12 weeks in the same role with the same school or Local Authority. Guidance on the Agency Workers Regulations 2010 is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/agency-workers-regulations-2010-guidance-for-recruiters.

In August 2018, in conjunction with the Crown Commercial Service, the Department for Education launched the agency supply deal. The deal supports schools with getting value for money when hiring agency supply teachers and other temporary staff.

The deal has established a list of preferred suppliers that schools can access, all of which:

  • Will be transparent with schools about the rates they charge.
  • Will agree to not charge finder’s fees for workers who have been in post for 12 weeks, when four weeks’ notice is given.
  • Will conduct consistent, rigorous background screening checks in line with the Department’s statutory guidance ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’.
  • Will be accredited by an approved accreditation body, that will audit suppliers for compliance with robust recruitment principles and the terms of the framework.

Details of the deal can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/deal-for-schools-hiring-supply-teachers-and-agency-workers.

Education is a devolved matter, meaning the devolved administrations set their own policy on supply teacher pay and conditions.

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