Almost a million public school teachers on Sunday have demanded from the government for the release of their 2018 performance-based bonus, amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis in the country.
The Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) Philippines said teachers have written a letter to the inter-agency task force, the Department of Education (DepEd) and the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) on February 28, 2020 inquiring on the status of the grant of their PBB 2018 to public school teachers.
“In behalf of the more than 800,000 public school teachers nationwide, we appeal to the AO25 Inter-Agency Task Force to allow the immediate grant of Performance-based bonus 2018 to all teaching and non-teaching employees of the Department of Education,” said Raymond Basilio, Secretary-General of ACT, in their “Urgent Appeal to AO25 Inter-Agency Task Force Re: Grant of PBB 2018 to DepEd teaching and non-teaching employees in light of CoViD19 Pandemic.”
The Inter-Agency Task Force on the Harmonization of National Government Performance Monitoring, Information and Reporting Systems, otherwise known as the AO25 IATF, is a body created by virtue of Administrative Order No. 25 to undertake the task of monitoring and evaluating the performance of government agencies.
“In the light of the palpable health and economic threats and effects of the CoViD19 to the nation, public sector education workers and professionals urgently need the relief that PBB2018 may bring given our low salaries and lack of genuinely free health care services,” said Basilio.
The PBB is supposed to reward outstanding performance in civil service and teachers have no doubt delivered on their duties and responsibilities despite the many challenges in the educational system, said Basilio.
Albeit burdensome, he said they have diligently and punctually complied with all the requirements expected on the part of teachers for the grant of PBB2018.
Denying public-school teachers of the bonus on the basis of administrative weaknesses and irregularities will be a grave injustice to mentors who endeavor everyday to educate the youth, he said.
“We appeal that you give education workers and their families a fair chance to combat and survive the health crisis that we now face. We hope that the AO25 IATF will act immediately on our plea based on just and humanitarian grounds,” said Basilio.
“Given the urgency of our situation and the long wait of our teachers, we request that the task force can give us a response on March 15, 2020,” he also said./Stacy Ang