6th October 2021

Education Policy Institute responds to the PM’s teacher ‘levelling up premium’

Today [Wednesday 6 October] in his speech at the Conservative Party Conference, the Prime Minister announced a £3,000 ‘levelling up premium’ to incentivise teachers into high-need areas.

Responding to the Prime Minister’s announcement on teacher pay incentives, Natalie Perera, CEO of the Education Policy Institute (EPI), said:

“One of the greatest challenges in education is ensuring that highly qualified teachers are available to schools situated in the most deprived parts of the country. Our research has uncovered severe shortages of teachers in subjects such as maths and physics, especially in disadvantaged areas of the country, where they are far less likely to have a degree in the subject they teach.

“The government’s move to reinstate targeted payments that aim to get teachers into challenging areas is therefore a welcome move – albeit one that has come late in the day.

“The government adopted our recommendations in 2019 when it originally introduced the policy, only to scrap it in 2020 – a decision which was very short-sighted given the precarious position of the teacher labour market at the time.

“While the Prime Minister’s announcement is encouraging, we await further details on how the policy will be targeted, as this will be crucial to its success.”