Education Authority promises payments for some, but not all, substitute teachers

The Education Authority (EA) has promised that some teachers who have not received payment due to problems with a new teacher registration process will receive interim payments by October 25.

However, it has emerged that 530 teachers did not receive their payments this week as expected

The EA said the ongoing problems with the payment system were due to four main reasons.

About 300 substitute teachers remained without pay for their work earlier this week, but the EA has now acknowledged another 230 teachers have also not received pay – about 10% of the substitute teacher’s workforce.

EA said the issue is related to the need to meet basic exam requirements or the lack of some of the following critical information:

In a statement, the EA outlined the reasons for the non-payment:

– The schools had not signed the booking that required the employer’s agreement to pay the salary;

– The teacher had not provided the payslip with bank details;

– The teacher is not live in the NISTR system; and

– Some teachers were under contract until the end of August and were already receiving salary, leading to a double payment issue.

A spokesman for EA added: “In addition, an administrative error uncovered late on October 17 has resulted in a further 230 teachers receiving only part pay as of October 18.

“EA is making interim payments to the teachers affected by the administrative error (whose bookings have been approved by the schools) to reach the accounts no later than October 25 and has apologized to the teachers affected.”

A substitute teacher who did not receive payment said the issue pushed her to care for her mother, who has cancer.

“I have been a substitute teacher for four teachers for about four years. I went to the same school and since the new NISTR register came into play it’s just a mess,” Sinead told BBC Radio Ulster’s Nolan Show. “I am currently not payable on any system.

“I was on hold on the phone with NI Direct, NISTR, the department Tuesday for over an hour and a half and no one can advise me. Nobody knows who to pass me on to.

“I haven’t had a decent salary since July. It’s October now,” she said.

“I worked every day in September. In order to get paid, your school must deregister you before a certain deadline. I was deregistered before this deadline.

“I know I’m in the system. I got some salary in September for the few days at the end of August.

“When our school secretary called on my behalf she was told I am not in any system and not being paid and no payment is expected in November as I am still not in the system. But I have to be in their system for the school to even be able to deregister me.

“It’s an outrage. I go to work like any other teacher in Northern Ireland. We take care of our children, for whom we are responsible. Simple logic will tell you that if you go to work, you will get paid. At Stormont you don’t go to work and you get your full salary. All we ask is that we be paid what is due us.

“I don’t pay my bills. I am the only income in our house. I withdrew from my savings, but I’ve exhausted that option.

“I really don’t know what to do.

“None of the four reasons given by EA apply to me. I got paid for some of my days in September but not all of them. I’m in the system.”

NASUWT North Secretary Justin McCamphill said the education secretary “needs to get a grip on her department and get this sorted out”.

“It’s incredible,” he said. “Now over 520 teachers are affected. The EA said 230 of them would receive the interim payments, but why not all? We don’t think the reasons they gave are piling up.” Education Authority promises payments for some, but not all, substitute teachers

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