School workers' union set to reject 'insulting' council pay offer

The latest offer would see at least a £1,929 increase in salary by January 1, 2024.

Scottish school workers’ union set to reject ‘insulting’ council pay offer iStock

The largest union representing Scottish council workers is set to reject the latest offer in an ongoing dispute over pay that will see schools across the country close.

The Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) made a two-part offer that would provide at least a £1,929 increase in salary by January 1, 2024.

But STV News understands that Unison will reject the deal with it being described as “insulting”.

Unison members in schools voted in large numbers to strike with 21,000 school staff set to walk out later this month.

COSLA said it had secured additional funding from Scottish Government of £94m in order to make the “extremely strong” revised pay offer on Wednesday.

Unison said it would hold an emergency meeting first thing on Thursday to go through the detail of COSLA’s offer and consider its position.

Members of the GMB, Unison and Unite unions rejected the previous pay offer of an average increase of 5.5%.

Most primary and secondary schools in Scotland now face closures from Tuesday, September 26, to Thursday, September 28.

What was the latest offer?

In the latest offer from COSLA, workers would see at least a £1,929 increase in salary by January 1, 2024.

This means they would receive an increase of £0.65 per hour, or a 5% rise in pay. The workers will get whichever increase would grant them a better pay rise.

Additionally, council workers would receive another rise which means their total pay will increase by £1 per hour since March 31 this year.

Alternatively, they would be granted a percentage increase in wages depending on what salary they are currently on.

For instance, a worker on £10.85 per hour would have their rate increased to £11.50 from April 1 2023, and £11.85 from January 1 next year.

Full-time workers on £20,390 on a 37-hour week would see their salary rise to £22,860.

Those earning between £25,560 and £28,510 would receive a pay rise of 7.63% by January 2024.

For workers earning between £28,860 and £38,030, pay would rise by 6.58%.

Anyone earning £38,586 or above would receive a pay rise of 6.05%.

COSLA said the pay offer would cost councils just under half a billion pounds, stating it aims to protect frontline workers employed by Scottish local authorities, who make up 85% of staff.

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