Minutes of consultations and meetings concerning teachers pay claim dispute: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Information requested

Minutes (in any format) from consultations/meetings between the Scottish Government and COSLA and EIS regarding the pay claim for teachers/teachers pay dispute. The dates in question are from April 2022 to the present day.


A copy of some of the information you requested is attached.

You may wish to note that minutes of full meetings of the Scottish Negotiating Committee for Teachers (SNCT) are published on the SNCT website once these are cleared by the SNCT Committee (usually at the subsequent full meeting). It follows that the Scottish Government does not control the schedule by which minutes are published.

Meetings of the SNCT Extended Joint Chairs (EJC) are not minuted; however, a meeting note may be taken. While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because exemptions under section 30(c) (prejudice to effective conduct of public affairs) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested.It is essential for officials to be able to meet, often in confidence, with external stakeholders on the Pay and Conditions of Service for teachers and associated professionals. Disclosing information about these meetings, particularly without the consent of the stakeholder, is likely to undermine their trust in the Scottish Government and will substantially inhibit communications on this issue in the future. Similarly, this applies to some information relating to other meetings around the dispute. Stakeholders will be reluctant to participate in meetings if they believe that their views are likely to be made public. This would significantly harm the Government’s ability to carry out many aspects of its work, and could adversely affect its ability to gather all of the evidence it needs to make fully informed decisions.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption. We recognise that there is a public interest in disclosing information as part of open, transparent and accountable government, and to inform public debate. However, there is a greater public interest in allowing Ministers and officials a private space within which to meet stakeholders. This private space is essential to enable all options to be properly considered, so that good policy decisions can be taken based on fully informed advice and evidence. Disclosure is likely to undermine the full and frank discussion of issues between the Scottish Government and these stakeholders, which in turn will undermine the quality of the policy making process, which would not be in the public interest.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.

FOI 202300343616 - Index of Enclosures


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

Back to top