Teachers in London strike over pension changes

Teachers are striking in London today over changes to their pension scheme.

Members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) and the University and College Union (UCU) have rejected the final offer from the government.

Members of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) have accepted the government’s pension scheme reforms, which were published on 20 December 2011.

The main changes to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme (TPS) include:

  • The normal pension age for teachers will in future match the state pension age.
  • Teachers’ pension contributions to increase by an average of 3.2%.
  • Final salary arrangements will be replaced by a career average scheme.
  • The index for pensions revaluation in service to will be based on the consumer prices index (CPI).
  • Pension accruals at 1/57ths.

Nick Gibb, schools minister, said: “Strikes benefit no one. This deal is as good as it gets and takes the right balance – guaranteeing teachers have one of the best pensions available, but keeping a lid on rising costs for the taxpayer.

“We have been in serious talks for months with unions to address their concerns and reach a final settlement. This strike, ordered by the NUT’s leaders, will not get its members any further forward.

“Reforms to public sector pensions are essential. The status quo is not an option. The cost to the taxpayer of teachers’ pensions is already forecast to double from £5 billion in 2006 to £10 billion in 2016, and will carry on rising rapidly as life expectancy continues to rocket.”

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