‘Disturbing’ gender pay gap in headteacher salaries

The Tes reports that unions say academisation is one reason that male headteachers earn more than women

There is a gender pay gap in headteacher salaries, with men earning more than their female peers in every sector of the state-funded school system, Tes can reveal.

According to analysis by Tes of the Department for Education’s latest school workforce statistics, across all state-funded schools male heads earned 12.5 per cent more than their female counterparts in 2016.

The average male headteacher took home £73,700 per year, compared to the £65,500 received by female heads. Much of that pay gap can be explained by the overrepresentation of men in leadership positions in the higher-paying secondary sector – but not all of it.

The biggest gender pay gap in any one sector was among heads of primary academies, where men earned an average of £4,000 – or 6.2 per cent – more than their female counterparts. 

The revelations were criticised by union leaders. Mary Bousted, ATL’s general secretary, said: “Women have never achieved equal pay for equal work”.

“In that respect, teaching is no different from virtually any other profession. The only difference is that teaching is an overwhelmingly female profession. They took home £68,300 on average, compared to the £64,300 earned by the women who make up 69 per cent of primary academy heads.”

The government has required all large employers – including schools – to record details of their gender pay and bonus data in April 2017 and publish it within a year.

Read more ‘Disturbing’ gender pay gap in headteacher salaries

Is there a gender pay gap in your school? What can be done about it? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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  1. Trb

    As a member of the Local Governing Committee in a school that has recently become part of a multi-academy trust, I was unhappy to discover that our new head had been appointed on a lower salary than before, on the grounds that some of the head’s responsibilities are now discharged by the MAT. We on the LGC had not been consulted on this. I wonder what effect this will have on the deputy heads who are already reluctant to take on the high-risk role of head. Are women more accepting of this downgrading of the head’s status? If so, this would further increase the pay disparity.

    • Far too late to now be thinking about the consequences. You people got yourselves into this – the only option now is to admit your guilt, apologise and seek to atone for your behaviour.

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