Responding to the announcement by the Department for Education over the teachers’ pension scheme, Mike Buchanan, Executive Director of HMC said:
“We support the provision of the Teachers’ Pension Scheme to all teachers in the state and independent sectors at time when recruitment and retention are critical. Anything that impacts negatively on schools’ ability to employ great teachers will harm individual children and young people.
“We are disappointed that the DfE has not acted to mitigate the negative impact of the 43% increase in contributions from our schools from September 2019. This significant hike was introduced within the current academic year without sufficient time to plan for its implementation. This will likely impact on our schools’ ability to do many of the things the DfE is hoping for in terms of collaborating with state schools and continuing to grow the number of free and nearly free places for the most disadvantaged children in our schools.
“Nonetheless, we are pleased that the DfE has listened and is intending to consult over the possibility of a “mixed” economy in schools. While schools generally will not wish to move away from the TPS these latest hikes in pension costs may be unsustainable in the long term for some. Governors and trustees are obliged to act in the best interests of their charity so they will have to weigh up carefully all the factors.
“We share the concerns of many Heads in the state sector about the future funding of this and any further increases in pension costs. At present, no guarantees are being provided about future costs and funding from the DfE beyond 2019/20. This uncertainty is unhelpful and unsettling for those charged with providing state-funded education to the nation.”