For teaching the next generation of citizens you’re entitled to a competitive salary, generous holidays, and a substantial pension.
As a new teacher, your salary will be between £25,714 and £32,157, depending on where you teach.
On average, established teachers earn more than this.
Average teaching salaries for 2021/22 are:
|Primary school teachers||£36,000|
|Secondary school teachers||£39,000|
|Leadership teachers (e.g. head of department)||£56,400|
You’ll get more days holiday than people in many other professions. In school, full-time teachers work 195 days per year.
For comparison, you’d work 227 days per year (on average) if you worked full time in an office.
Teachers’ pension scheme
The teachers’ pension scheme is one of the most generous in the country. It is a ‘final salary’ scheme, which gives you a regular source of income when you retire. It is:
- based on your teaching salary rather than the amount of money you pay in
- registered with HM Revenue and Customs - so your contributions are tax-free
- flexible and allows you to take some of it as a tax-free lump sum
Establishing yourself as a teacher
As well as pay, holidays and a pension, all teachers are given extra support during their first 2 years in teaching. During this time, teachers are called ‘early career teachers’ (ECTs).
The support includes:
- paid time away from classroom teaching to focus on learning
- access to a range of high-quality training
- a mentor who will give you guidance and support
This extra support used to last 1 year, and teachers would be called ‘newly qualified teachers’ (NQTs).
There are different ways to progress and increase your salary.
For example, you can move into a more senior role, or take on additional responsibilities that help your school.
Qualified teacher pay
The school you teach in will have their own pay scales for qualified teachers. Pay increases will always be linked to performance, not length of service.
Annual salary ranges for qualified teachers are:
|Rest of England and Wales||£25,714||£36,961|
Senior teacher pay
If you take on extra responsibilities, like being a head of department, you can be put onto a higher pay scale.
Teachers in this pay scale are important members of a school’s leadership team, and they often work closely with Headteachers.
Annual salary ranges for senior teachers are:
|Rest of England and Wales||£38,690||£41,604|
Leading practitioner pay
If you’re an established and exceptional teacher, and regularly show the highest standards of classroom teaching, you can be put onto a higher pay scale.
Although they may not lead departments, leading practitioners coach and mentor other teachers and induct trainees and early career teachers (ECTs).
The pay scales for leading practitioners are:
|Rest of England and Wales||£42,402||£64,461|
A headteacher is the most senior person in a school. They are ultimately responsible for all teachers and pupils.
Their role is wide ranging, but includes leading and motivating teachers, and ensuring all pupils get a good education.
Annual salary ranges for headteachers are:
|Rest of England and Wales||£47,195||£117,197|
You might also get extra payments for taking on extra responsibilities.
These payments are called ‘teaching and learning responsibility’ (TLR) payments. The extra responsibilities you might take on are:
- progressing the education of people beyond your assigned pupils
- leading, developing and enhancing the teaching practice of others
- TLR payments come in 2 main pay ranges (TLR 1 and TLR 2) depending on your responsibilities.
Unqualified teacher pay
Many schools in England require teachers to have ‘qualified teacher status’ (QTS). If you do not have this, you can work in some schools as an unqualified teacher.
Annual salary ranges for unqualified teachers are:
|Rest of England and Wales||£18,169||£28,735|