/ 30 July 2021

THE ALLIANCE of Concerned Teachers urged the House of Representatives to  pass House Bill 5990 that seeks to upgrade the minimum salaries of teachers to salary grade 15 and college instructors to salary grade 16 as it cited the rising cost of goods.

The group also sought an entry-level pay of P16,000 a month for government employees.

It stressed the need to provide aid for all amid the looming surge of Covid19 cases driven by the Delta variant.

The group argued that upgrading teachers’ and education workers’ salaries is all the more urgent and just.

“Teachers were promised decent salaries, but, so far, our and the rest of our impoverished kababayans’ economic situation only worsened under the Duterte admin, even with the negligible salary adjustments from the SSL (Salary Standardization Law) 5. The government’s botched response to the pandemic has furthered the economic crisis in the country, as well as worsened the chronic crisis in education due to years of state neglect,” Raymond Basilio, the group’s secretary general, said.

Basilio added that pre-pandemic, the pay hike worth around P1,500 per month brought by the SSL was hardly enough to afford teachers a decent standard of living.

“The health crisis forced our expenses to balloon—both personal, as in for our families, and professionally as we were made to shoulder the costly shift to distance learning. Hindi pa namin nababawi ang mga inabonohan namin sa distance dulot ng kawalang suporta ng gobyerno rito, ngayon tataas naman ang presyo ng mga bilihin. Hindi na kami makaagapay,” Basilio said.