Home Menu

Recruitment and retention

Pay and conditions icon.jpg

School leaders are driven by an ambition to provide opportunities for young people to reach their full potential. To fulfil that ambition, teaching must attract and retain a high-quality, well-trained and properly rewarded workforce. 

Through our work with members, NAHT is documenting and communicating the unfolding recruitment and retention crisis taking place in our schools to policymakers at the highest levels. 

NAHT is campaigning to:

Ensure all schools can recruit and retain excellent teachers and leaders

  • Lobby for change and reform of key macro issues affecting recruitment and retention: pay, accountability, funding and workload and identify key actions to be taken to improve these
  • Press for the development of a range of flexible leadership and non-leadership pathways to support recruitment and retention, including new opportunities that will retain the experience and expertise of mid to late career leaders
  • Build on the opportunities offered by the Early Career Framework to press for similar support for new heads, deputies and assistants, and school business leaders
  • Maintain a watching brief on the impact of Brexit on teacher supply
  • Lobby the DfE for practical measures to address the workload of school leaders, including protection of strategic leadership time
  • Campaign for a staged real term, restorative pay award for teachers and school leaders
  • Develop a position on the role of CEOs and other posts outside the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document (STPCD) including a position on which roles should have a requirement for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)
  • Lobby for a review of the pay system, including the STPCD
  • Press government to maintain and enhance the teacher's pension scheme and/or Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS)
  • Support work to ensure the profession represents a diverse workforce, including those with protected characteristics
  • Support effective partnerships between school leaders and governors with clarity of roles and responsibilities across different school structures.

Create a safe working environment for school leaders and their staff

  • Lobby the DfE to take concrete steps to tackle verbal and physical abuse and aggression against school staff, including harassment online and through social media.  

Ensure professional recognition of school business leaders (SBLs)

  • Lobby the DfE for SBLs to be included within a new national framework of terms and conditions for school staff
  • Promote the professional standards framework for all SBLs
  • Raise the profile and understanding of the SBL role across the school sector, including with governors.  


NAHT submits response to the Treasury's consultation on the proposals to the cost cap mechanism

We have submitted our response to the Treasury's 'Public Service Pensions: cost control mechanism consultation.'


The cost control mechanism was introduced following the recommendations of the Independent Public Service Pensions Commission (IPSPC) in 2011.

For each scheme, the mechanism assesses certain aspects of the costs of providing that scheme; if, when the mechanism is tested, those costs have decreased/increased by more than a specified percentage of pensionable pay compared to their original level, then member benefits in the relevant scheme are increased or reduced to bring the cost of that scheme back to target.


HM Treasury is currently consulting on a number of changes to the mechanism following a 'breach' in the 2016 valuations. Proposals include changes to the type of pension schemes included in the calculations, changes to the 'corridor trigger' and the introduction of an 'economic check.'

NAHT's response on behalf of England, Wales and Northern Ireland schemes

NAHT strongly opposes this review, and we are of the view that it could be considered as an alteration to the 25-year pension agreement settlement. We believe that the case has not been made for the need to review the mechanism and that the arguments put forward by the government for doing so, are disingenuous. 

You can read our full response below. 

First published 16 August 2021