Aquino urged to fast-track approval of teachers’ wage hike bill-A A +A
Saturday, October 6, 2012
AS THE country honored the teachers during the culmination of the Teachers’ Day celebration on Friday, a member of the House of Representative urged President Benigno Aquino III to fast-track the approval of House Bill (HB) 2142 or the Public School Teachers' Salary Upgrading Act and similar bills long pending in the two chambers of Congress.
Representative Antonio Tinio of ACT Teachers party-list said in a statement that upgrading the salaries of teachers is the best gift Aquino can give to them.
HB 2142 proposes to increase teachers' minimum salaries from Salary Grade 11 to SG 15 or P18,549 a month to P24,887, an increase of P6,338.
Tinio is also urging Aquino and Congress to increase the monthly pay of volunteer teachers of kindergarten schools from P3,000 to P6,000, which was already submitted and deliberated in the plenary during the tail-end of the 2013 budget process last month.
"With low compensation in the face of large class sizes, instability of employment and lack of benefits, majority of the volunteer teachers are the lowest paid and most abused employees in the entire bureaucracy," Tinio said.
He said to meaningfully celebrate World Teachers' Day, Aquino should respect the rights of volunteer Kinder teachers to adequate remuneration and living wage.
World Teachers' Day is celebrated on October 5, the day of the adoption of the 1966 ILO/Unesco Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers, a landmark document heralding international standards on teachers' rights regarding salaries, working conditions, tenure and other aspects of employment.
There are around 24,000 “volunteer teachers” nationwide.
On Friday, at least 5,000 teachers from all over Mindanao converged in a mall in Cagayan de Oro for the culmination of the month-long celebration of Teachers’ Day.
Dr. Myrna Castaños, Gingoog City Schools Division Superintendent and chairperson of the World Teachers’ Day publicity and media committee, earlier said this year’s national celebration is anchored on the heroic acts of teachers in schools, especially in the cities greatly affected by tropical storm Sendong last December 2011.
She said this year’s theme, “My Teacher, My Hero,” will give honor to teachers who, despite being survivors of Sendong themselves, went around different evacuation centers in search of their students and encouraged them to go back to school.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on October 06, 2012.