Chester’s MP, Chris Matheson has criticised the government’s record on teachers pay and recruitment levels, calling for teachers to be “properly respected and valued for the crucial work they do”.

In a parliamentary question to the Minister for School Standards, Chris called on the Government to take measures to reduce excessive teacher workloads and stress.

“We have fantastic teachers in Chester and our schools are some of the best in the North West. But teachers are overworked and underpaid for the hugely important job that they do. I talk to teachers in Chester who love their work but can’t sustain the long hours and undue pressure”.

“And the number of teachers dropping out is a testament to the stress. Between 2016-17, 9.9 per cent of teachers left the workforce. The Government are also failing to replace these teachers, leaving undue stress to fall on the hardworking teachers who remain.”

The government has missed its target for training the required number of newly qualified secondary teachers for five years in a row.

“We know that pay freezes are one reason for the high attrition rate of our teachers, but also the crushing workload is driving teachers out.”

“Teachers are doing a fantastic job with the limited resources they have. But we must recognise their dedication by paying them properly.”

“It is shocking that teachers in England work the second longest hours, behind Japan, in the OECD”.

“The Government’s commitment in the Queen’s Speech to raise starting salaries for teachers to £30,000 by 2022/23 will only return starter teachers’ pay to where it was in 2010 in real terms. It is unacceptable that that teachers haven’t had a proper pay rise in ten years”.

“Teachers in Chester and across the UK deserve better, and I will continue calling on the Government to give teachers a proper pay rise to teachers.”

Chris has been fighting school cuts since he came into office in 2015.

School budgets have been slashed over the last 5 years with a national reduction in per pupil funding of £245 in primary schools and £304 in secondary.

“In Chester, every pupil is receiving £432 less in Government funding than they were in 2015. Parents are being forced to pay for classroom essentials and basic facilities have been neglected. I want to see funding prioritised to schools, to ensure that every child gets the best possible education and start in life.”

“Supporting dedicated teachers is key to ensuring that our city continues to lead the way”.

For more information see:

Info at https://www.nfer.ac.uk/news-events/nfer-blogs/latest-teacher-retention-statistics-paint-a-bleak-picture-for-teacher-supply-in-england/

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