ACT solon files bill upgrading public school teachers’ salary

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Public school teachers hold a mass action calling for higher minimum salaries. (Photo courtesy by Bulatlat)

MANILA, Philippines — Assistant Minority Leader and ACT Teachers Representative France Castro on Wednesday filed House Bill 5990 upgrading the minimum salaries of public school teachers to Salary Grade 15, teaching personnel in higher education to salary grade 16 and minimum salaries of non-teaching personnel to P16,000.

Castro also filed House Bill 5991 increasing the Personnel Economic Relief Allowance (PERA) granted to government employees to P5,000 from P2,000.

“The struggle for a substantial salary increase for teachers that would provide decent lives for them and their families is far from over. Salaries of teachers have been left behind compared to those professions with similar qualifications and workload since the Duterte administration doubled the salaries of its military and uniformed personnel,” Castro said.

Castro said teachers are only given increases of a little over P6,000 spread across four years, or about P1,500 annually.

This is a far cry from their calls for a substantial increase in salaries since these measly increases given in tranches will only be quickly eaten up away by excise taxes and inflation, said Castro.

“President Duterte cannot claim that government does not have money for a substantial salary increase for teachers. This is a matter of budget prioritization. The Duterte administration simply does not prioritize substantially increasing the salaries of its public school teachers and other civilian employees. The 2020 budget of the Duterte administration is a budget for war against its people, prioritizing the military over social services,” Castro said.

Castro said President Duterte has promised teachers many times that he will substantially increase the salaries of government employees especially public school teachers. (S. Ang/IAMIGO/Currentph.com)

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