MEMBERS of Scotland’s largest teaching union have voted to accept a pay deal, ending its long-running campaign of school strikes.

Teachers with the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) backed the sixth deal put to them, which will see a 7% pay rise backdated to April 2022, a further 5% next month, and another 2% in January.

Some 90% of EIS members who took part in the vote backed the pay offer, with 10% rejecting it. There was a turnout of 82%, the union said on Friday.

It comes after the Scottish Secondary Teachers’ Association (SSTA) union announced its members had backed the offer on Thursday.

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EIS and SSTA leaders had recommended members accept the deal.

NASUWT members are also involved in the dispute and its general secretary, Patrick Roach, had condemned the latest offer from Scottish Education Secretary Shirley-Anne Somerville as “only a paltry improvement” on the previous proposal.

That union is also balloting its members on the deal.

The EIS members’ approval of the deal came after a breakthrough in negotiations last week, which saw the union pause strikes set to be staged in the constituencies of senior politicians, including First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

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It had also planned a 20-day campaign of rolling strikes in every part of Scotland.

The pay dispute between councils and the teaching unions had become bitterly contested, with the first walkout taking place last November.

Somerville labelled the latest deal a “historic offer” which she said would see teacher pay “increase by 33% from January 2018 to January 2024”.

She said when the offer was tabled last week: “We have looked for compromise and we have arrived at a deal that is fair, affordable, and sustainable for everyone involved. The Scottish Government is supporting this deal with total funding of over £320 million across this year and next.”

She added on Friday: “I am very pleased that EIS and SSTA members have voted overwhelmingly to accept this historic offer and I look forward to the Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers giving it formal consideration in due course.

“It is the most generous offer to teachers in more than 20 years and one that is fair, affordable and sustainable for everyone involved.

“Teachers in Scotland are already the best paid in the UK and this deal will mean a salary rise of £5,200 in April for most teachers, and a cumulative rise of 33% since January 2018.

“A resolution to this dispute and an end to the threat of further strike disruption in our schools will be a huge relief for children, young people, parents, carers, and teachers, too.”