HC Deb 18 November 1958 vol 595 cc999-1000
30. Mr. Rankin

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will introduce legislation to make salary increases to teachers effective from the date of the award.

36. Mr. Malcolm MacMillan

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will now consider the introduction of legislation to enable awards of salary increases to teachers to be made retrospective.

Mr. N. Macpherson

My right hon. Friend has already carefully considered the matter earlier this year, following representations from the Educational Institute of Scotland. He came to the conclusion that he would not be justified in introducing legislation and this is still his view.

Mr. Rankin

Is it the case that policemen and firemen can have their pay awards made retrospective? Does not he regard it as unjust that the teachers should be barred, by Statute, from similar treatment? Does he assure us that he cannot find one little minute in the Session to remedy this acknowledged injustice?

Mr. Macpherson

The machinery for fixing police salaries, for example, is different from that for settling teachers' salaries, which is based upon a periodic review at regular intervals of three years. This review is normally completed in time for the relevant Regulations to come into force on the due date. Interim increases are not frequent.

Mr. Malcolm MacMillan

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that it is exactly because of those differences that we are asking for new legislation? Secondly, since he cannot make the awards either respectable or retrospective, will he at least in future avoid losing the good will of the teaching profession by the delay in his decision and the application of it for several months at a time? There is surely no need for that.

Mr. Macpherson

I can assure the hon. Member that there was no unavoidable delay in this case.