Levelling up premium payments for teachers

Overview

You might have heard of levelling up premium payments for teachers but might be unsure of how to apply for it.

The Department for Education (DfE) explains that from autumn 2022, early career teachers can claim a levelling up premium payment for teaching the following subjects in eligible state-funded secondary schools:

  • Maths
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Computing

The levelling up premium payment gives eligible teaches up to £3,000 in the following academic years:

  • 2022 to 2023
  • 2023 to 2024
  • 2024 to 2025

You can register your interest here.

Levelling up premium payments for teachers: eligibility

The DfE explains that you must meet the eligibility criteria to be able to claim any additional payments.

Once the claim window opens in autumn 2022, you will be able to answer some questions to find out what additional payments you are eligible to claim.

You will only be able to claim either an early-career payment or levelling up premium payment per academic year, even if you are eligible to claim for both payments.

Learn more about what additional payments are available.

School eligibility

Levelling up premium payments will be offered in schools identified as having a high need for teachers. If you teach in an eligible school in an Education Investment Area, you will receive a higher payment.

Learn which schools are eligible

Methodology

The DfE has produced a methodology document which explains their funding approach.

Qualifications

To claim, you must have completed at least one of the following:

  • An ITT course specialising in mathematics, physics, chemistry or computing
  • Training to get qualified teacher status (QTS) through assessment only or overseas recognition in an eligible academic year
  • A UK undergraduate or postgraduate degree related to mathematics, physics, chemistry and computing on the JACS 3.0 principal subject codes or with a relevant higher education classification of subjects (HECoS) code
  • An equivalent non-UK degree

QTS and QTLS

To claim a payment in the academic year 2022 to 2023, you must have one of the following:

You must have started a postgraduate ITT course or completed an undergraduate ITT course in the 2017 to 2018 to the 2021 to 2022 academic years.

The academic year runs from 1 September to 31 August.

Employment

You must be employed as a teacher in a state-funded secondary school in England when you apply for the payment. State-funded secondary schools include:

  • Local authority-maintained secondary schools (including middle-deemed secondary schools)
  • Academies, free schools or multi-academy trusts
  • Special schools (local authority-maintained or non-maintained)

You must have spent at least 50% of your contracted hours allocated to teaching one or more of the eligible subjects at the time of the application.

Supply, private school and sixth-form college teachers

If you are a supply teacher, you must:

  • Be employed directly by the school
  • Have been working for at least one term before applying

You cannot come from a private agency.

If you teach in a private school or sixth-form college, you are not eligible.

Part-time teachers

If you are a part-time teacher, you are eligible for the same levelling up premium payment amounts as full-time teachers.

You still need to meet the same eligibility criteria in full.

Breaks in teaching

You are allowed to have some breaks in your normal employment which include:

  • Sickness, maternity, paternity, parental or adoption leave
  • Annual leave
  • Time between unfair dismissal and an employee being reinstated
  • Military service, for example with a reserve force
  • Temporary lay-offs

Performance

You must not currently be subject to any:

  • Formal performance measures as a result of continuous poor teaching standards
  • Disciplinary action

Levelling up premium payments for teachers: payments and deductions

Number of payments

You can only claim one additional payment in each academic year, even if you are eligible for more than one type of additional payment.

For example, if you are eligible for both the levelling up premium and early career payments, you can only claim one of these additional payments in the same academic year.

However, if you are eligible to claim back your student loan repayments, you will be able to claim this as well as a levelling up premium payment or early-career payment.

Paying Income Tax and National Insurance

The levelling up premium payment is considered taxable income.

The DfE will pay Income Tax up to basic rate (currently earnings of £12,571 to £50,270, taxed rate 20%) and National Insurance for the payment on your behalf.

If you become or already are a higher rate taxpayer, any additional Income Tax and National Insurance contributions for this payment over the higher rate will remain your responsibility. The higher rate is currently earnings of £50,271 to £150,000, taxed rate 40%.

The DfE is not liable to reimburse tax at the higher rate.

Please review the tax bands updated on Income Tax rates and Personal Allowances.

The payment is not part of your salary from your employer. You, your employer, or the government will not make a contribution to your pension as part of this payment.

Please consider any other benefits or tax credits that could be affected if you claim this payment.

Student loan deductions

If you have a student loan you are currently paying off, a deduction will go towards repaying your student loan. This is taken from your payment automatically.

If you are an Edapt subscriber and you have any questions about your pay you can contact us for advice and support.

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The information contained within this article is not a complete or final statement of the law.
While Edapt has sought to ensure that the information is accurate and up-to-date, it is not responsible and will not be held liable for any inaccuracies and their consequences, including any loss arising from relying on this information. This article may contain information sourced from public sector bodies and licensed under the Open Government Licence. If you are an Edapt subscriber with an employment-related issue, please contact us and we will be able to refer you to one of our caseworkers.