News

Soulbury members consulted on 2.75% pay award

22 July 2020

A pay award of 2.75% has been formally offered to the Soulbury Committee, the collective bargaining forum that negotiates salaries and conditions for local authority educational advisory staff and other professionals, such as community service managers and educational psychologists.

Prospect’s Education and Children’s Services Group Executive Council recommends that the offer is accepted, subject to consultation with members.

The award for 2020 constitutes:

  • an increase of 2.75% on all pay points and scales from 1 September 2020
  • an increase of 2.75% on London and Fringe Area allowances from 1 September 2020.

Prospect national secretary, Steve Thomas, said:

“We pushed hard to improve on the 2% in previous years, and emphasised the vital work that our members are doing, in particular in providing professional support to elected members, children and young people and other stakeholders during the COVID-19 crisis.

“While the offer does not reflect our ambitious claim and the strong arguments we made for a greater increase, it does reflect the largest percentage increase for some years in a period of instability, including on already distressed local government finances.”

Thomas added the offer was significantly higher than inflation and above the median pay award across the whole economy for the last period with available data.

Consultation

Members who are covered by Soulbury can send in their comments and feedback by emailing wakefield@prospect.org.uk.

All correspondence will be treated anonymously and, alongside the GEC’s positive recommendation, will help to inform Prospect’s response to offer.

Separately, Prospect is working with the Local Government Association to examine the impact of COVID-19 on the work of Soulbury officers, with a view to establishing an understanding of statutory obligations, resourcing and skills. Comments can be sent to wakefield@prospect.org.uk.

Soulbury terms for non-Soulbury members

While not all ECSG members are formally covered by the Soulbury Agreement, it is the intention that the provisions in the latest agreed offer will also apply to professionals doing similar roles outside of local authorities.

Prospect will continue to be in dialogue with the Local Government Association on this issue, and press them to ask all their employers to fully comply with the spirit in which it is intended.

In making its formal offer, the Local Government Association placed on record its appreciation for the work of Soulbury Officers.

The Local Government Association said:

“The Employers’ Side does wish to record its thanks for the commitment and significant role that Soulbury Officers undertake in helping to maintain and improve local authorities’ education and children’s services, in relation to school improvement, educational psychology services and the management of the youth service.

“The importance of these roles and activity is particularly recognised in the current crisis.”

Similarly, in May, Councillor Roy Perry, chair of the Soulbury Committee, for National Employers, wrote to Education Secretary Gavin Williamson specifically to praise the work of Soulbury officers, especially during the coronavirus pandemic.


Education and children's services

Prospect represents nearly 3,000 professionals in education, children's services, early years, commissioning and children's social care.