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					 ADVICE ON THE APPLICATION OF THE AGREEMENT RE
      TRAINEE EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGISTS

         THE SOULBURY COMMITTEE OFFICERS’ SIDE

          AEP             ASPECT                NUT             NAYCEO


INTRODUCTION

This briefing gives advice on the terms and application of the agreement
reached in the Soulbury Committee on 28 March 2007 in respect of trainee
educational psychologists pay in the second and third years of their training.
The new three-year educational psychology training route replaced the
previous entry route with effect from September 2006.

The advice is issued on behalf of the Officers’ Side of Soulbury which
comprises the Association of Educational Psychologists (AEP), the
Association of Professionals in Education and Children’s Trusts (Aspect), the
National Association of Youth and Community Education Officers (NAYCEO)
and the National Union of Teachers (NUT).

Individual educational psychologists should seek assistance from their own
trade union (AEP or NUT as appropriate).


KEY FEATURES OF THE AGREEMENT

The agreement on pay and conditions of service for trainee educational
psychologists in their second and third years of training applies to trainees entering
their second year of training with effect from September 2007 and to all second and
third year trainees thereafter.

The Officers’ Side sought and secured this agreement in order to ensure that
nationally-agreed appropriate rates of pay are prescribed for trainees with employed
status and that their conditions of service and employment rights are protected. The
Officers’ Side will, in the coming years, continue to seek to extend the agreement in
order to offer similar protections to trainees in the first year of training.

The following is taken from the Soulbury Committee Joint Circular to local authorities
setting out the provisions of the agreement.

a)      Trainee educational psychologists in the second year and third year of their
training should be employed by local authorities under contracts of employment and
not engaged on any other purported basis. They should be employed under the
terms of the Soulbury Report and with the same contractual entitlements as other
officers of the local authority employed on that basis.
                                            2


b)    A six point pay range has been established for trainee educational
psychologists in the second year and third year of training as follows:

       Point 1                     £20,500
       Point 2                     £22,000
       Point 3                     £23,500
       Point 4                     £25,000
       Point 5                     £26,500
       Point 6                     £28,000

c)     Individual trainees’ placement within the above pay range in the second year
and third year of training should be determined by employing authorities on the basis
of local assessments. Such assessments should appropriately recognise the work
undertaken by the trainee in the second year and third year of training and reflect the
trainee’s range of duties and responsibilities, including overall job size. They may
also reflect other relevant factors such as recruitment and retention.

d)     While trainees will be employed on the basis that they will be available for
work for 3 days per week in the second year and 4 days per week in the third year of
training, it is not intended that the above rates should be applied on any pro rata
basis.

e)     The London area allowances set out in the Soulbury Report are payable in
addition to the above rates to those trainees employed in the relevant areas.

f)     Trainees in the first year of training will not be employed by local authorities.

g)     The above structure will be the subject of review by the Soulbury Committee
including during the forthcoming negotiations on the September 2007 pay settlement
for Soulbury officers.

It is the view of the Officers’ Side of the Soulbury Committee that the employer
should meet in full the costs of university fees for trainee educational psychologists
in the second and third years of their training.


TRAINEE EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGISTS IN YEARS 2 AND 3

Trainee educational psychologists in Years 2 and 3 must, in order to continue their
training, secure employment in an education psychology service. The Soulbury
Committee agreement now provides that they should be employed under contracts
of employment.

Trainees will spend some 60 per cent of their time in Year 2 and 80 per cent in Year
3 working for their employing authorities and carrying out functions within the
authority’s educational psychology service work. The remaining time will be spent
on academic work in planning, conducting and writing up applied research in order to
complete the doctorate qualification.
                                            3


Pay Rates for Trainees in Years 2 and 3

As indicated above, the agreement provides for a six point pay range for trainee
educational psychologists. The pay range will run from £20,500 to £28,000.

The pay range is not an incremental scale. As noted above, employing authorities
must place individual trainees within the above pay range on the basis of local
assessments. Assessments should be carried out at the beginning of each of the
two years for which the range is applicable. Assessments may also be carried out
during each year in order to take full account of increasing competency and
workload.

The Officers’ Side believes that employers should take account of the following in
their assessments:

     Trainees in the second and third years of the new three year Doctorate
      training route would previously by this stage have completed the previous one
      year Masters training route and gained fully qualified status. The Officers’
      Side believes that authorities should seek to minimise the impact of the new
      longer training route upon the pay received by those entering employment as
      educational psychologists

     A survey of training institutions carried out for the Officers’ Side has revealed
      that institutions expect the level and set of skills and knowledge for trainees
      who have completed the first year of the Doctorate route to be similar to those
      acquired under the one year Masters route. Training institutions also expect
      that trainees would have wider experience and a broader and deeper
      theoretical knowledge than hitherto. Trainees in Years 2 and 3 should
      therefore be able to undertake the same level of generic work as those who
      had newly qualified under the Masters route.

     Given these expectations and the skills which will have been acquired, there
      is no case for choosing pay rates which are lower than those for unqualified
      colleagues paid on the Assistant Educational Psychologist pay scales.

     Difficulties in recruitment and retention of educational psychologists continue.
      The most recent Soulbury Workforce Survey showed high turnover rates,
      falling start rates and a rising age profile. It is in employers’ interests to place
      trainees on appropriate rates of pay.

     Finally, it should be noted that trainees in year 3 will be available to undertake
      one-third more work than in year 2. This increased workload should be
      reflected fully in the chosen pay point.


The Officers’ Side therefore advises that:

     trainees in Year 2 should be placed on point 4 of the six point pay range;
      and
     trainees in Year 3 should be placed on point 6.
                                            4


As noted above, the Officers’ Side also advises that it is possible for authorities to
allow trainees to advance through this range during each year if they choose in order
to take full account of increasing competency and workload. For example, a Year 2
trainee placed initially on point 4 could advance after six months to point 5, before
advancing to point 6 at the start of Year 3.

It should be noted that the Soulbury Committee agreement provides that the above
pay rates are not to be applied on a pro-rata basis but are payable in full to trainees.

The Officers’ Side has welcomed the agreement but considers that the pay rates
provided are inadequate and impose a pay cut on trainees in comparison to the rates
provided under the former one year route. The Officers’ Side will, therefore, continue
to seek appropriate increases in future Soulbury pay negotiations.


Pay Rates on Completion of Training

Upon successful completion of the three year Doctorate qualification, trainee
educational psychologists will acquire fully qualified status and will be entitled to be
paid on Scale A for educational psychologists.


The Officers’ Side advises that, at the minimum, newly qualified educational
psychologists should be appointed to Scale A at point 3 or, if higher, two
points above the authority’s normal starting point for newly qualified
educational psychologists under the previous one year route.


This will reflect the fact that the trainees will have spent two years longer in training
than previously. It will ensure that they enter Scale A at the point they would have
achieved by the same date if they had followed the previous one year training route.

In its 2007 pay claim, the Officers’ Side will be seeking a restructuring of the
educational psychologists’ pay structure with the objective of securing a single scale
for qualified educational psychologists. As part of this, the Officers’ Side will be
seeking the removal of the lower points on the current Scale A in order to secure
higher minimum entry points for newly qualified educational psychologists.


Contracts of Employment for Year 2 and 3 Trainees

The Soulbury Committee has agreed, as noted earlier, that trainee educational
psychologists in the second and third year of their training should be employed by
local authorities under contracts of employment and not engaged on any other basis.
They should be employed under the terms of the Soulbury Report and with the same
contractual entitlements as other officers of the local authority employed on that
basis, subject of course to any service requirements.

The existence of contracts of employment will provide obvious protection to trainees
in respect of matters such as occupational pension provision, sickness and maternity
pay and leave and other statutory and contractual employment rights.
                                             5


This contrasts to the lack of protection for trainees under other suggested
arrangements such as further student bursaries or “training contracts”. The view of
both the Employers’ and Officers’ Sides, following discussions with HMRC, was that
a contract of employment would be deemed to exist between authorities and trainees
in years 2 and 3, due to the nature of the relationship and the work undertaken, even
if authorities sought to depict the relationship as a “traineeship” or some other status.


The Officers’ Side advises, therefore, that authorities are required to employ
Year 2 and 3 trainees under contracts of employment and should not take
them on under any other purported basis.


The Officers’ Side is aware that, in Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government has
previously proposed the payment of a training bursary to trainees in years 2 and 3.
Such trainees are, however, covered by this agreement and should be employed
under contracts of employment in accordance with the agreement. The Officers’
Side will take all appropriate steps to secure the application of the agreement.


TRAINEE EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGISTS IN YEAR 1

At the present time it has been determined that trainees in year 1 of the three year
Doctorate training route are in full time education at their training institutions. They
are not employed by any local authority.

The Local Government Employers (LGE) will continue to operate a bursary scheme
for trainees in year 1, maintaining the scheme which existed under the former one
year route. For the year starting September 2006, the bursary payment was set at
just under £15,000.

The Officers’ Side recognises that this level of payment is influenced by the funding
available to the LGE to administer the scheme; and that the funding system for the
scheme will change from September 2007, placing pressure on the number of
funded places available in future years. The Officers’ Side remains unhappy,
however, over the low level of the bursary payment for year 1 trainees and will
continue to seek to identify ways of improving the situation.

Trainees in year 1 will not now have the status of “employees” and will not be liable
to income tax or National Insurance contributions. The Employers’ Side believes that
trainees cannot be employees during year 1 of the new three year route on the basis
that the circumstances cannot, as a matter of employment law, be construed as
giving rise to a contract of employment. This means that, in addition, trainees in year
1 will not be entitled to membership of an occupational pension scheme, sickness or
maternity pay and leave or other statutory and contractual employment rights.

The Soulbury Committee has agreed to take steps to ensure that, after trainees
enter employment, they are able to secure pension entitlements for this period on a
retrospective basis and will be able to count this period for the purposes of sickness
or maternity arrangements. The issue of continuity of employment for redundancy
pay purposes, however, remains unresolved.
                                                       6


The Officers’ Side continues to believe that it would be far preferable for trainees to
be employed on three year training contracts providing entitlements to occupation
pension provision, sickness or maternity pay and leave, continuity of service for
employment rights purposes and the guarantee of continued employment following
successful completion of training. The Officers’ Side will continue to press for reform
of the new training route over the medium term on this basis.




Officers’ Side of the Soulbury Committee
May 2007




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