Raising teachers’ pay to affirm the dignity of the teaching profession, Senator Pia S. Cayetano today said raising the compensation of teachers is the best affirmation of government’s high regard for the country’s educators and their contributions to nation-building.
The senator issued the statement in time for National Teachers’ Day, which is being observed on October 5 (Saturday). A staunch education advocate, Cayetano authored Senate Bill No. 70, or the ‘Additional Support and Compensation for Educators in the Basic Education Act.’ The measure proposes a salary increase of P10,000 per month for public school teachers, locally-funded teachers, and non-teaching personnel of the Department of Education (DepEd).
The salary hike shall be granted over three years in three tranches, starting with a P4,000 monthly pay hike in the first year, an additional P3,000 per month in the second year, and a final increment of P3,000 per month on the third year.
The bill is currently being deliberated with similar measures by a technical working group under the Senate Committee on Civil Service, Government Reorganization and Professional Regulation. “Raising the compensation of teachers affirms the dignity of the teaching profession. This will not only improve their lives but also inspire them to further improve,” she explained.
“We have so many hardworking teachers who deserve more support. Also, we can still do better to make the teaching profession more attractive to the best and brightest,” she stressed.
“I want to be able to leave that kind of legacy to our children – that they can go to any school in the Philippines, and get the best education possible because they will be mentored by intelligent and dedicated teachers,” she added.
Cayetano pointed out that empowering teachers to successfully fulfill their role in society is part of the country’s commitments to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Goal 4 of the SDGs particularly states that by 2030, the supply of qualified teachers in the country should have substantially increased.
Apart from the salary adjustment, Cayetano’s bill seeks to grant public school teachers the following benefits: Medical allowance, a yearly bonus based on the Magna Carta for Public School Teachers (RA 4670), and additional compensation from local school board funds.
The former chair of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts, and Culture, Cayetano has championed the passage of landmark laws that enhanced public education in the country, including the National Teacher’s Day Act (RA 10743), Unified Student Financial Assistance System for Tertiary Education or UniFAST Act (RA 10687), Open High School System Act (RA 10665), Open Distance Learning Act (RA 10650), Iskolar ng Bayan Act (RA 10648), and Ladderized Education Act (RA 10647)