More than six in 10 parents would support teachers taking industrial action if they were given a below-inflation pay rise, according to a new survey published by a teaching union.
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In the survey of more than 2,000 adults in the UK, including parents, those with children under the age of 18 were more likely than those without children to support teachers taking industrial action, with 64 per cent of parents saying such a move would be justified.
The support for teachers was highest among parents with children aged 5 to 10, with 72 per cent in this demographic saying teachers would be justified in taking industrial action over their pay.
While most parents said they would support teacher industrial action, only 37 per cent said they would be willing to pay more taxes to fund higher salaries for teachers.
When asked about the current state of teacher pay, more than half of parents said they believed teachers were paid ‘about the right amount’, while a quarter said they were underpaid. Just 3 per cent of parents said they thought teachers were overpaid.
Commenting on the findings, Kevin Courtney, joint general secretary of the National Education Union, said: “This poll shows that there is significant public support for teachers taking action over their pay.
“Parents understand that if we want to attract and retain the best teachers in our classrooms, then we need to offer them a pay deal that keeps up with the cost of living.”
On the other hand, a spokesperson for the Department for Education said: “We recognise and value the hard work of teachers, which is why we have already delivered the biggest ever cash terms pay rise to teachers, worth almost £1,400 on average.
“This is in addition to recent changes which will see starting salaries increased to £30,000 by September 2022 and all teachers moving up to the upper end of their pay range if they meet certain standards.”
What do you think? Would you support teacher industrial action over pay? Let us know in the comments below.