UNISON secured an agreement to pay the living wage to all school support staff in the Reach2 academy trust wef last month.
This ensures that hundreds of staff employed across Reach2’s schools receive a living wage of £7.65 per hour, or £8.80 for those working within Greater London boroughs.
The living wage, which employers voluntarily choose to pay, covers the basic cost of living in the UK. Research indicates that the living wage has a positive impact on the recruitment and retention of staff.
Reach2 is working constructively with UNISON – the country’s largest trade union for school support staff – in implementing this initiative across the trust, and has always demonstrated a commitment to joint working on employment-related issues that affect school support staff.
Jon Richards, UNISON’s national secretary for education and children’s services, said: “This is fantastic news for staff working in Reach2. More academy shools should follow the example of Reach2 in ensuring that school support staff are paid the living wage, which goes towards providing a basic standard of living.
“UNISON is deeply committed to addressing the effects of poverty and narrowing the pay gap for our lowest-paid members. We believe that staff should be paid enough to provide for their families’ basic needs, and so welcome Reach2’s commitment.”
“School support staff play a vital role in our education system and they should get the recognition – and pay – they deserve.”