Laura Doel; NAHT Cymru director said: “Whilst this report shows both an increase in the number of applicants to initial teacher education, and fewer teachers leaving the profession in 2020, we cannot afford to be complacent. We are very clear that the recruitment and retention issues in Wales have not gone away.
The uncertainty and insecurity created by the pandemic will have likely meant many teachers staying put. It still remains the case, as this report concludes, that teachers just beginning their careers are the most likely to leave, and those schools in disadvantaged areas continue to face higher rates of teachers leaving the profession – again, something this report confirms.
The only way for the crisis in teacher recruitment and retention to be addressed is through a fair pay deal. In the four years since pay was first devolved and the Independent Welsh Pay Review Body was established school leaders and teacher pay has suffered.
The Welsh Government has a clear choice to make. Like many other public sector workers, teachers and school leaders have endured years of austerity and falling living standards. The impact of years of real terms pay cuts are now being compounded by the rapid rise in the cost of living.
Government’s upcoming announcement on school leaders’ pay is critical in protecting the profession for future generations.
A temporary increase in application and retention rates must not mask the true situation. I urge the Government to sit up, take notice and offer our members a pay deal which truly reflects the value they offer”.
First published 23 June 2022