Primary head’s £375,000 salary causes controversy

An investigation carried out by has revealed that Primary head Sir Craig Tunstall earns almost £375,000.

The large salary prompted the investigative journalism website to question whether Tunstall, who earns his salary for his position as executive head of the Gipsy Hill Federation, is ’is this the highest paid primary school headteacher in Britain?’.

The Gipsy Hill Federation is a group of nine local authority primary schools and, because the schools are overseen by Lambeth Council, Tunstall’s salary was revealed as part of audit of the Council’s accounts being carried out by “The People’s Audit” campaign, in which took part.

The audit found that Tunstall is on a total pay packet of £374,147 - £330,394 in salary and a £43,753 pension contribution. The large figure means that Tunstall earns more than the chief executives of most large academy chains two-and-a-half times that of the prime minister.

A spokesman for Lambeth Council told TES: "Sir Craig Tunstall is paid according to the appropriate regulated bodies for teachers pay which follows the financial regulations set nationally and adhered to by our Governing Body. He receives remuneration for the post of chief executive headteacher of five Lambeth schools, one Lambeth Children Centre, three Southwark schools, one Southwark Children Centre, consisting of just over 4,000 pupils, and over 600 staff, and one free secondary school due to open in 2017.

"Six of the schools have Ofsted grades of outstanding and two currently have good judgements with outstanding features. Due to his outstanding achievements within these schools he was awarded a knighthood. He is currently a National Leader of Education and one of his schools is a National Support School which means he can be asked to assist other schools who are in need of help.

"Sir Craig and his senior leadership team have gone through an amazing journey in each of our eight schools and two Children’s Centres across 11 sites. We do not do quick-fix remedies. The work they have done is substantial, and sustainable into the future. At the heart of all we do (and all that Sir Craig has ever done) is to ensure that every child in each of our schools get the very best education we can deliver."

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