If you have a story call our newsdesk on 01722 426511 or email us. To advertise call 01722 426500.
Unions criticise chief inspector
Teachers' leaders have attacked England's chief inspector of schools after he said they must work extra hours if they want a pay rise.
Sir Michael Wilshaw, the head of Ofsted, told The Times inspectors would mark down schools that gave pay increases to teachers who were "out the gate at 3 o'clock".
He said he expected teachers to stay beyond the end of the school day to "go the extra mile" for children, especially when working in poor communities.
Complaining that schools appeared to reward staff regardless of their performance in the classroom or their commitment to pupils, he said: "In last year's (annual) report, we said that 40% of lessons overall were not good enough. And yet everyone is getting a pay rise. Something is wrong with the system."
School inspectors have been told to challenge head teachers and governors to justify pay rises to teachers and to give a lower rating to schools that have increased staff pay without good reason. He wants schools to be more selective in giving teachers pay rises.
He said: "It will mean some will get pay rises, some won't. As a head I would make it clear that if you teach well or try to teach well, if you work hard and go the extra mile, you are going to get paid well. You are going to be promoted. Somebody who is out the gate at 3 o'clock in the afternoon is not. Isn't that fair? Am I being unfair?"
He also said that teachers unwilling to act as surrogate parents in poor areas to pupils who lacked support at home did not deserve a salary increase.
He said: "We just have to accept the reality of that. If you are going to go and work in these areas, there has to be a commitment to working beyond the end of the school day. That's why I asked those questions about performance management. It's about recognising those people who do go the extra mile."
His comments come as anger mounts among teachers over perceived erosion of their pay and working conditions.
NUT deputy general secretary Kevin Courtney said: "This adds to the impression that Sir Michael Wilshaw wants to be at war with teachers in this country. Teachers' pay should not be determined by head teachers at the school level. We don't want a system where head teachers pick and choose favourites for pay rises."