Significant Progress on New Entrant Pay

Following sustained negotiations, INTO CEC briefed on outcome

Following a motion at INTO’s Easter Congress 2018, the trade union entered into negotiations with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform on issues pertaining to the pay scale for post-2011 entrants to the profession. The talks took place in the context of a March 2018 report on salary scales which established that such talks would focus on the length of the scale and excluded discussions on initial placement on the scale and the
payment of allowances.

Meeting today in Dublin, members of the union’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) were briefed on a proposal from the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform following sustained negotiations between the public sector unions and government. The CEC recognised that the outcome involves significant progress towards pay equality and provides pay equality for a number of cohorts including current entrants but does not fully
restore pay equality for the earliest group of post-2011 entrants.

The agreement proposed by Government includes:

  • The removal of two increments (4 and 8) from the post 2010 teachers’ scale, meaning that newer entrants will progress up the scale quicker. This reduces the teachers’ scale from 27 to 25 points.
  • An implementation date of 1 March 2019, meaning teachers will benefit from the new scale from next year. This is a significant achievement as the Government had previously confirmed that the talks could not give rise to public expenditure during the current term of the Public Service Stability Agreement, which runs until 2020.
  • The provision of full upward pay equality for new entrants to the sector from 2017 onwards.
  • Those who have endured the imposed rates of lower pay longest will benefit earliest.
  • The uplift from point 7 to 10 is worth €4,956 of which €3,466 is linked to this agreement (as opposed to the single incremental progression laid out of €1,490). The majority of teachers on point 7 would be 2011 entrants.

The CEC has approved plans to put the outcome of the negotiations to a ballot of members.

INTO General Secretary Sheila Nunan said, “After many months of negotiations, we have finally concluded an agreement with the Government on pay-related matters for new entrants to the teaching profession. While this outcome demonstrates significant progress, it does not address starting points on the scale or the issue of allowances.

The agreement tabled today provides full upward pay equality for new entrants from 2017 and delivers significant progress for earlier new entrants.

“These talks would not have taken place without the support and campaigning of members, both new entrants and those not themselves directly impacted, across the country.”

Examples of Pay Uplifts Under Proposals for All Cohorts of New Entrants 2011-2018 Inclusive

Teacher A qualified in 2011 and began teaching in September of 2011. S/he has taught without break since and had two three-month increment freezes under FEMPI legislation. S/he is now on point 7 of the scale and due to go to point 8 on 1 March 2019. Salary from 1 October 2018 (point 7) is €44,162. Instead of going to point 8 (€45,652) in March 2019, s/he will move three increments to point 10 (€49,118). Instead of the normal increment of €1,490, salary in March will increase by €4,956 (+11.2%) of which €3,466 is due to the proposals.

Teacher B qualified in 2012, has the same work pattern as Teacher A above and is now on point 6. Instead of moving to point 7 in March 2019, s/he will move three increments to point 9, i.e. a rise from €42,684 to €46,896 or +€4,212 (+9.9%) rather than +€1,478 (3.5%).

Teacher C qualified in 2013 and is on point 5. Rather than moving to point 6 in March 2019, s/he will move two increments to point 7. (S/he will also skip point 8 on the subsequent incremental date, going from 7 to 9). Next March, instead of moving up by €1,317 s/he will see a rise of €2,795 (+6.8%).

Teacher D qualified in 2014, has taught continuously since and had one three-month increment freeze under FEMPI. S/he will move from point 5 to 7 in 2019 (salary rising by €2,845, +6.8%, rather than €1,341 or 3.2%). S/he will also skip point 8 on the subsequent incremental date, going from 7 to 9.

Teacher E qualified in 2015 and has taught continuously since. S/he move up two increments next year, moving from point 4 to 6, (salary rising by €2,451, +6%, rather than €1,091 or 2.7%). S/he will also skip point 8 when they reach it.

Teachers F, G and H qualified in 2016, 2017 and 2018, respectively. They will skip points 4 and 8 when they reach these incremental points.

Text of Department of Public Expenditure and Reform Paper below:

Agreed measure to address salary scale issues under Section 4 of the Public Service Stability Agreement (PSSA) 2018-2020

The following measure has been agreed by the Parties to the PSSA, informed by the Report to the Houses of the Oireachtas by the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform in accordance with Section 11 of the Public Service Pay and Pensions Act. It also reflects detailed discussions and analysis between the Public Services Committee and representatives of Public Service Employers. The outcome is considered the best that can be achieved in the context of the PSSA and the very significant other expenditure demands on the Exchequer for Budget 2019 and subsequent years.

  • Where two additional scale points were applied to pay scales under the Haddington Road Agreement, it is agreed that there will be two separate interventions in the pay scales as they apply to ‘new entrant’ public servants recruited since January 2011.
  • The two separate interventions will take place at point 4 and point 8 of pay scales. The practical effect of this is that for ‘new entrants’ the relevant points on the scale will be bypassed thereby reducing the time spent (by bypassing two increment points) on the scale for progression to the maximum point.
  • Where one additional scale point was applied to scales, a single point of intervention will apply at point 4.
  • This measure will apply from 1 March 2019 and will be applied to each eligible new entrant as they reach the relevant scale points (point 4 and point 8) on their current increment date.
  • Due to the interaction with normal increment progression, the above means that existing ‘new entrant’ staff) whose next increment after 1 March 2019) is Point 7 or above on relevant scales will receive the benefit of both interventions on the date of their next normal increment. Existing ‘new entrant’ staff due to reach points 5 or 6 on relevant scales as their next normal increment will get the benefit of the first intervention on that date and the second when they progress to Point 8.
  • All of the above is subject to not exceeding the scale max. Where necessary the waiting time for Long Service Increments (LSIs) where they currently apply in relevant scales will be reduced by one or two years as appropriate as part of the implementation of the above measure.

The cost of this measure during the remaining term of the PSSA is €75m.

It is estimated some 58% (35,750) of ‘new entrants’ will benefit from this measure in year 1 rising to 78% (47,750) by year 2.

The above measure will be given effect by way of a detailed Circular in due course.