Teachers Pension Scheme Advice
Guy Ellis - your independent, trusted advisor.
The Teachers’ Pension Scheme (TPS) is changing and the consequences for Independent Schools are profound. In September 2019, contribution rates increased from 16.48% to 23.68%, an increase of 44% and there are suggestions from the Government that rates may rise again in September 2023.
The DfE continues to consult with Schools about the possibility of implementing mixed pension arrangements but since the beginning of 2019, 62 Independent Schools have indicated that they are leaving the TPS.
Teachers’ salaries are a significant proportion of any Independent Schools budget and a 44% increase in contributions to the TPS cannot be easily absorbed into ‘regular’ annual fees, especially when further rises are planned. Coupled with increasing political pressures to offer more bursaries, greater difficulties in sourcing overseas students and a realisation that middle class families are being priced out of the market, Independent Schools Trustees and Boards are being required to make tough decisions with a well-loved benefit.
However, there are alternatives available in the form of Defined Contribution Pension Schemes. While not providing the same level of security to teachers, Schools can better plan their budgets without the risk of an open-ended financial commitment, and if appropriate, can offer their teachers greater flexibility to meet individual life styles. This can include variable contributions with the balance paid as salary, extended death in service and critical illness cover, or even medical insurance.
Before making any changes to a teachers terms and conditions, Schools need to follow the appropriate laws and should wherever possible, abide by ACAS guidelines.
I, Guy Ellis, offer Trustees, Boards, Senior Teachers and Teacher Representative groups independent advice and support in how the changes will impact you and what your options are. With over thirty years in implementing benefits, including pensions, across a range of industries in the UK and Europe, I can advise on the technical aspects of consulting with teachers, implementing contractual changes and the process of change. In addition, I can help you screen and select benefits providers, conduct benefits evaluations and provide cost implications.
I am not tied to a Pensions provider so can offer independent advice on the pros and cons of all the alternatives, including staying within TPS. In addition, 30 years experience of UK employment law allows me to give you a balanced perspective of your potential legal choices, rather than a 'black or white' view.
For a no commitment, no cost chat about what you can do to manage this pension change, please contact me about changes to the TPS and what they might mean to you and your school.