Teachers’ group “thankful” for public school teachers’ pay hike but says it’s not enough

Palace gives assurance President Duterte will comply with his promise

(Eagle News) — A teachers’ group on Thursday, Jan. 9, thanked government for the increase in the salaries of public school teachers, but said this was not enough.

In a statement, the Teachers Dignity Coalition national chair Benjo Basas said that while the group “recognizes” the increase in the salaries of government workers, “if (President Rodrigo Duterte) just adopted the (Salary Standardization Law) V submitted by Congress, this is far from what we expected.”

“This SSL V is a generic law which does not recognize the specific worth of our teachers and the recommended remuneration scheme as provided by the 53-year Magna Carta for Teachers and even the State principle set by our Constitution,” Basas said.

According to Basas, Duterte “promised a P10,000 hike for teachers over and above the SSL when he decided to run for office in 2015” and the group “waited for three years.”

“If it is over, we just appeal for a dialogue with him,” Basas said.

But Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said it was far from over.

In a press conference in Malacanang, Panelo said “the promise of the President will be complied with.”

“Maybe not this year, but his term has not yet ended. You must remember that the increase will depend on the funds that this government has,” Panelo said.

Under the new law signed by President Duterte on Wednesday, Jan. 8, the salary adjustment of government workers would be given in four tranches starting January 2020 until 2023.

Employees under Salary Grades 10 to 15 will get the highest increase–from 20 to 30 percent.

Those under SG 25 to 33 will have an increase of 8 percent.

Those under SG 1 to 10, on the other hand, will get an increased pay from 17.5 percent to 20.5 percent over four years.