HC Deb 02 December 1920 vol 135 cc1468-9W

asked the President of the Board of Education whether he has considered the Report of the standing joint committee of representatives of local education authorities and the National Union of Teachers recommending the adoption of standard scales of salary for teachers in public elementary schools; and whether he can indicate the attitude of the Board towards their recommendations?


The Report contemplates the adoption of standard scales as from the 1st April next, in the result of provisional local agreements and review of them by the Committee who intend to prepare a comprehensive schedule showing the scale which in their opinion is appropriate to each area. A considerable interval must then elapse before the process is completed, and it is only after its completion that it will be possible to form even an approximate estimate of the financial effect of the proposals. The matter is receiving my very close attention, and pending such further definition of the Board's attitude, after consultation with the Chancellor of the Exchequer, as it may be incumbent on me to give, I think it desirable to say, in order to prevent misunderstanding and future embarrassment, that where since the issue of the Report improved or standard scales have been adopted locally to take effect before their confirmation by the Committee, I cannot, at all events until they have been considered as components of the comprehensive schedule which is contemplated, commit the Board to pay grant in respect of any additional expenditure incurred; and moreover that I cannot in any case, and whatever the date at which an improved scale was adopted, commit the Board to the payment of grant on the basis of higher expenditure in any area than that involved by the adoption of Scale IV.