The EIS has decided to ballot its members on the latest pay offer to teachers and associated professionals.
The EIS is recommending that members vote to reject the offer, and is calling for a huge ballot turnout and an overwhelming refusal to accept the current divisive proposal from the Scottish Government and COSLA.
The proposal from the Scottish Government and COSLA is based on a 3% cost of living increase, coupled with structural changes to the main-grade salary scale for unpromoted teachers only. The EIS has already stated that it believes the offer is unacceptable and would do little to address the growing crisis in teacher recruitment and retention across Scotland.
EIS General Secretary Larry Flanagan said, "An extremely angry EIS Salaries Committee has today taken the decision to open a consultative ballot of our members on the pay offer from the Scottish Government and COSLA. EIS Negotiators are very clear that this reheated offer, which has previously been rejected by all of the teaching unions on the Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers, is divisive and continues to undervalue teachers."
The EIS is strongly recommending to our members that they send a very clear message by voting overwhelmingly to reject this offer."
Mr Flanagan added, "Scotland's teachers were angered by reports in the press earlier this week, based on comments made by Deputy First Minister John Swinney, claiming that Scotland's teachers are apparently 'well-paid'. The reality is that Scotland's teachers have seen their take-home pay reduced, in real-terms, by around 24% over the past decade."
Mr Flanagan added, "The low pay of Scotland's teachers is glaring in comparison to other countries. OECD data confirms that the average pay, internationally, for an unpromoted teacher is over £42,000. In Scotland, the top of the scale for a class teacher is less than £36,500. Even in terms of the UK, contrary to the Deputy First Minister's claims, Scottish main-grade teachers would still be below the majority of unpromoted teachers in England."
The ballot will open on Tuesday 30 October. The ballot paper will say: "Do you wish to accept or reject the terms of the Employers' Side offer dated 6 September 2018. The Salaries Committee recommends that you reject the offer. In the event of a rejection the EIS will seek further negotiations within the SNCT. Should those negotiations fail, it is likely that an indicative ballot on industrial action will be held."