Ministers have been urged to reopen talks on teachers pay after the independent review body recommended a 6.5 percent increase this year.

Union bosses said it was “significant progress.”

If fully funded by the government, it could end the strikes that have affected children’s education and the disruption of exams.

Paul Whiteman, secretary general of the National Association of Educational Directors, said the recommendation showed how “out of context” the previous offer from the Department of Education was.

He said: “The government needs to fully fund the prize, address this year’s unresolved wage issues along with easing the workload and inspection pressures. The government urgently needs to return to serious negotiations.”

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Leaders of the National Education Union welcomed the recommendation. Mary Bousted, Joint Secretary General, said: “We believe this is significant progress and could be the basis for a resolution of the dispute, but we have to go back to negotiations.”

The School Teacher Review Body recommended the raise and told Education Secretary Gillian Keegan that the raise is necessary to retain teachers in the profession.

The recommended amount is more than two percentage points higher than the 4.3 percent offer made to teachers in March, which was rejected by the unions.

It is understood that the Secretary of Education received the proposals last Tuesday. The government wants to limit wage increases to five percent, but unions have been pushing for more.

It has been claimed that a two per cent increase would lead to an additional £360m of spending.

The Government has given an extra £2bn to schools in England and said it should be enough to pay for pay rises.

Experts like the Institute for Fiscal Studies suggested that a 4.3 percent increase would be affordable for most schools.

Teachers in England received an average raise of five per cent this year, but with inflation running at more than 10 per cent, education unions have sought higher raises, matching Scotland and Wales.

Junior consultants, nurses and doctors continue to threaten strike action while railway workers continue to strike.

The Department for Education said: “We will consider the recommendations and post our response in the usual way.”

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