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No deal in college pay talks

19 May 2014

UCU has rejected a 0.7% pay offer and told England's college bosses to come back to the negotiating table with an offer that addresses members' falling pay over recent years.

Unions met with the colleges' representative, the Association of Colleges (AoC),on Friday to try and thrash out a deal. Further education staff have seen their pay fall by 16% in real terms since 2009 and must now also meet higher monthly pension contributions. The next set of talks are scheduled for Wednesday 18 June.

UCU head of bargaining Michael MacNeil said: 'The employers' offer of 0.7% looks little different from recent years and does not address our concerns about members' falling pay. To restore any credibility to these national pay negotiations the employers need to demonstrate that they are prioritising staff.

'We hope the AoC will return with an offer that better reflects our demands. We have our annual conference next week where I am sure delegates will express their frustration with the failure of the employers to seriously address our claim.'

UCU said colleges made deliberate choices with how income is allocated and had chosen not to prioritise staff, or to even maintain spending on staff as a proportion of their income. The percentage of college income spent on staff has fallen from over 65% to under 62% in just three years.

According to the Office for National Statistics lecturers in further education are paid around 7%, or £2,300, a year less than their colleagues teaching in schools, despite teaching the same subjects.

Last updated: 10 December 2015