MANILA, Philippines – Recognizing that teachers are the “lifeblood” of the Department of Education (DepEd), Vice President and Secretary Sara Duterte put a spotlight on their welfare during her Basic Education Report (BER) 2023 on Monday, January 30.
“Without our teachers, our mission to carve a better future for our children will fail,” Duterte said, as she underscored the importance of teachers in addressing the learning crisis in the country.
The Vice President laid out her plans for teachers, who have been on the frontline in addressing the country’s education woes.
- Provide professional development programs.
- Provide support in terms of innovative, responsive, and inclusive teaching approaches.
- Train teachers and students in using technology in remote learning.
- Provide trainings and other learning and development interventions for school leaders.
- Remove non-teaching tasks and provide administrative officers in schools.
- Fast-track the implementation of the career progression policy so teachers get more opportunities for promotion.
- Strictly implement the Merit Selection Policy so appointments at DepEd are based on key knowledge, skills, attitude, and desired behaviors.
- Continuously advocate for additional benefits for teachers.
- Implement the policy on the distribution of teacher workload and payment of teaching overload based on Magna Carta for Public School Teachers.
- Expand the coverage for the grant of Special Hardship Allowances.
- Address issues affecting the net-take-home pay of teachers.
- Provide free annual medical check-ups.
The Vice President also said that they would coordinate with the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) for an “improved and superior benefits package for all DepEd personnel.”
“We will resolve issues on teachers’ loans, premium remittances, and other benefits. We have committed to meeting at least once a month until these issues are resolved,” Duterte added.
Duterte also said that they are working to provide a free legal assistance facility for teachers on matters concerning loan contracts, obligations, and cases.
When schools in the country shifted to remote learning in 2020, teachers from public schools took it upon themselves to launch donation drives to raise funds for bond paper and printers for the reproduction of learning modules.
Teachers’ groups have been asking the government for a better compensation package. Currently, those who have Teacher 1 designation earn P27,000 per month.
For years, teachers have been leaving the country in their quest for better pay and better working conditions.
“To our teachers, we recognize your zeal, integrity, commitment, and passion. And, yes, we also recognize your sacrifices. We thank you for your sacrifices,” Duterte said. – Rappler.com
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