MEMBERS of Scotland’s largest teaching union have overwhelmingly rejected the latest pay offer – with 98% of teachers who took part in a ballot for the EIS union voting against the deal.

More than half (53%) of eligible members took part in the ballot, with only 2% voting to accept the pay rise that has been offered.

EIS general secretary, Larry Flanagan, said the result of the vote showed that teachers considered the pay offer to be “neither fair nor acceptable”.

Teachers in the NASUWT had already rejected the proposed pay deal earlier in January.

READ MORE: Record number of Scots from deprived areas heading to university

And EIS leaders said they now expected an “enhanced offer” will be made when the unions meet with the Scottish Government and the local government body, Cosla, next week.

But the union warned it would also be considering the “next steps” as it insisted that politicians “cannot take the goodwill of teachers for granted”.

Flanagan said: “Scotland’s teachers deserve a fair pay rise from their employers and the Scottish Government.


“With this ballot result, our members have shown, very clearly, that they consider the current offer neither fair nor acceptable.

“Throughout the continuing Covid crisis, Scotland’s teachers have worked flat out to seek to minimise the damaging impact of the pandemic on young people’s education.

“Teachers are key to the planned programme of educational recovery and deserve to be appropriately remunerated for their efforts.

“It is time for Cosla and the Scottish Government to play fair and finally commit to a reasonable and fair pay rise for Scotland’s teaching professionals.”

The salary increase being negotiated is for the year 2021-22, with the EIS saying it would see all grades of teaching staff being given a 1% rise effective from April 2021, with a further 1% as of January 2022.

There would also be a one-off payment of £100 for each staff member on the date the offer is agreed – though part-time teachers would receive less.

And for those earning more than £80,000 per annum, the salary rise would be capped at £800.

EIS salaries convener, Des Morris, said: “Scotland’s teachers have sent a very strong and very clear message with this ballot result.

“This overwhelming rejection of the current offer by EIS members is a warning to Cosla and the Scottish Government that they cannot take the goodwill of teachers for granted.

“The EIS Salaries Committee will consider the ballot result and the next steps to be taken at its meeting later this week.

“We will fully expect to receive an enhanced offer from Cosla and the Scottish Government at our next negotiating meeting, currently scheduled for next week.”

Scottish Labour education spokesman Michael Marra said the result of the EIS ballot “speaks volumes about the strength of feeling among teachers, who have long been undervalued and overworked”.

He said: “Teachers have been working tirelessly throughout the pandemic, facing up to unprecedented challenges and doing their best to protect kids’ education.

“It beggars belief that the SNP’s response to these efforts is to try and inflict a real-terms pay cut.

“This insulting pay offer is clearly not good enough – the SNP must sit down with the unions to agree a truly fair deal for teachers.”

Scottish Liberal Democrat education spokesperson Willie Rennie also argued that teachers “deserve more than this derisory pay offer”.

READ MORE: MSPs vote down Scottish Tories' 'highly irresponsible' education motion

Rennie stated: “The message from the teachers is overwhelming. The employers must listen and treat teachers with the respect they are due.”

A Cosla spokesperson said: “Local Government values teachers, alongside all other parts of the workforce.

“We are committed to reaching an affordable conclusion to the 2021-22 pay claim and remain in active discussions with Scottish Government and the trade unions within the Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers (SNCT).”

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “We are committed to supporting a fair pay offer for teachers through the Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers, the body that negotiates teachers’ pay and conditions of service. It is for local government, as the employer, to make any revised offer of pay.”