Better PH education? Pay teachers more – Otso Diretso
CAVITE, Philippines – Opposition senatorial candidates in Otso Diretso are supporting higher pay for teachers to improve the state of Philippine education.
The candidates expressed this view in reponse to questions at the "#YouthVote: Awareness and Candidates Forum" at De La Salle Medical and Health Sciences Institute Tuesday, March 19, where they were asked for suggestions to raise the quality of education in the Philippines.
Otso Diretso bets Chel Diokno, Samira Gutoc, Florin Hilbay, and Gary Alejano all agreed that providing teachers with the necessary technical and technological support is crucial. (INFOGRAPHIC: How much are public school teachers getting?)
“Kausap ko kahapon ang mga public school teachers. Sabi nila sa akin, number one, kulang na kulang sila sa suweldo't benepisyo. Pangalawa, kulang ang libro sa mga estudyante. Pangatlo, wala silang technical and technological support. We need to increase our budget for our public schools,” said Diokno
(I spoke to public school teachers yesterday. They told me that number one, their salaries and benefits are not enough. Second, students don't have enough books. Third, they don't have the technical and technological support. We need to increase our budget for our public schools.)
Gutoc, a civic leader from war-torn Marawi City, said she met teachers from Tawi-Tawi City who do not even have internet access.
“Sometimes in Tawi-Tawi, there is no WiFi. How can we download the dictionaries? How can we upload information, give information, give libraries on our cellphones so that it can be accessible to every student and faculty? And you will improve the educational system when you give technological support to our schools,” said Gutoc.
As for Hilbay, the former solicitor general said the state of school facilities should be improved, including that of public libraries.
“Palakasin ang mga public libraries dahil ang edukasyon, hindi lamang sa eskuwelahan pati sa labas ng eskuwelahan na rin (Strengthen our public libraries, because education is not just in schools but outside of it as well),” he said.
Alejano, for his part, suggested schools that do no meet the standards set by the Commission on Higher Education should be shut down.
“Tingin ko taasan 'yong standards. Especially sa CHED, 'yung mga eskuwelahan na hindi nagko-comply sa standards, they should be warned, they should be closed, kasi nagiging negosyo na lang. 'Di man kalidad 'yong mga nag-ga-graduate,” said the former mutineer-turned-Magdalo congressman.
(I think the standards should be raised. Especially for CHED, the schools that do not comply with standards should be warned, should be closed because they are turning it into a business. Their graduates are not qualified.)
Filipino teachers have long been calling for an increase in their salaries. In 2017, educators sounded the alarm after a Department of Education (DepEd) order that allowed loan payments to be deducted from teachers' salaries, leading to a meager take-home pay.
This year, another salary-related issue hounds teachers. DepEd had warned it will have difficulty sourcing funds to pay around 80,000 teachers needed to be hired for the coming school year if the 2019 budget is still not signed into law. – Rappler.com