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FE pay in Wales

UCU negotiates on FE pay and conditions in Wales alongside the other relevant trade unions with the Welsh FE employers' association ColegauCymru.

Please see FE agreements in Wales for all national agreements, including those relating to pay matters.

Claim 2020-21

The further education (FE) joint trade unions (JTUs) met with the employers (CC) on 11 Nov 2020 to discuss their response to the pay offer from Colegau Cymru (CC). As a consequence of the differential offer on pay the JTUs informed CC that they were only able to note the offer. Following that meeting CC wrote again to improve their offer to business support staff as follows:

'Following the meeting, members have had an opportunity to reflect on the allocation of funding available. As a result the following settlement will be actioned in order to hopefully reach pay packets as soon as possible. The exact terms are as follows:

  • business support staff of 3.1% 
  • staff on MG1 8.48% 

  • staff on other MG grades 3.75% 

  • staff on UP grades 2.75% 

  • managers 2.75%.

The settlement preserves as far as is possible pay parity with teachers which is a requirement of the additional funding provided by the minister. It also provides for an increase elsewhere of 2.75% and 3.1%, which is in excess of the LRD Pay Line median which currently stands at 2.0%. The members of the Forum appreciate the wider point being made by JTU in respect of differentiated settlements, but at this time the view is that we should end this year's negotiations. With the terms of a Welsh government funded independent survey being agreed with officials and the resolution of concerns regarding holiday use and accrual being resolved over the summer, I hope that the JTU can agree that the employers have met and indeed exceeded the terms requested in the pay claim for 2020/21.'
We expect the pay increase backdated to 1 August 2020 to be paid in the December 2020 pay packet.


The joint trades unions in Wales submitted their FE pay claim for the academic year 2019/20 on 24 July 2019, two days after the education minister announced that the School Teachers Review body had recommended a 2.4% uplift, the Welsh government announced their intention to award 2.75%, with a 5% uplift for newly qualified school teachers:

Pay claim for FE sector in Wales 2019-20 [219kb]

Margaret Phelan, Wales Official, said 'it will be interesting to see whether the employers continue to maintain pay parity with school teachers. We are expecting a response from Colegau Cymru mid-October.'

The joint trade unions wrote to the employers in February 2020 to accept a 2.75% increase in pay for all staff excluding those on MG1 of the lecturers' common pay scale and 5% increase in pay for all staff on MG1.

Claim 2018-19

The majority of joint trade union members voted to accept a revised pay offer following a claim of 7.5% made by the joint unions for 2018-19:

On the basis of the additional funding provided by the Welsh government our amended offer for the current academic year is a differentiated award set out as follows: 

Staff cohort Increase

  • All teaching grades up to and including Main Grade 6 lecturers 3.5% 
  • Upper spine (UP 1 - 3) 2% 
  • All staff on Management contract (Excluding Senior Post Holders) 1.5% 
  • Business support - (Salaries below £19,500) 4.5% 
  • Business support - (Salaries above £19,501) 2%

Claim 2017-18

The Joint Trade Unions (JTUs) submitted their pay claim for 2017/18 and negotiations with ColegauCymru began in June 2017:

Wales joint union pay claim 2017-18 [256kb]

ColegauCymru recommended a 1% increase to colleges. Although the School Teachers Review Body (STRB) made a recommendation that will result in a higher 2% increase across all scales points for teachers in Wales, UCU's Further Education Sector Committee has agreed to note the pay increase in members pay packets as they felt they would not be fair to ask members to lose a day's pay in order to gain an additional 1%. The 1% increase has already been paid by employers.

Claim 2016-17

The joint trade unions agreed to accept the 1% pay offer from ColegauCymru for 2016-17.

Wales joint union pay claim 2016-17 [179kb]

Employers response to the Wales joint union FE pay claim 2016-17 [1mb]

For more information please contact Karen Williams, UCU Wales administrator.

See also: Wales FE pay scales

Last updated: 24 November 2020