/ 28 October 2021

ACT TEACHERS Partylist Representative France Castro on Wednesday urged the Department of Education to heed the demands of teachers for overtime pay.

The call was made after a dialogue with the party-list group and DepEd, observed by representatives from the Civil Service Commission and the Department of Budget and Management.

During the dialogue, DepEd and the teachers’ group both presented their positions on the issue of overtime pay for teachers.

The education department was firm in its stand that there was no excess work in the 13-month long pandemic school year and that the 220 maximum school days under RA 7797 only pertains to class days of students and not teachers.

Castro, however, reiterated that teachers started reporting for work on June 1, 2020 to prepare for the start of the pandemic school year which ended 297 days later on July 10, 2021.

She said that the DepEd’s position is unjust because it implies that there is no limit in the number of working days of teachers.

ACT reiterated that its demand for 77 days service credit and 25 percent overtime premium is just.

“We urge the Department of Education to put itself in the shoes of its teachers who have been the backbone of the continuing education despite the problematic pandemic school year,” Castro said.

“Teachers did more than what was asked from them to ensure that the government can still provide access to education despite the pandemic situation. It is very clear that they rendered excess work in the past 13-month long pandemic school year, DepEd should give them adequate compensation for services they rendered,” she added.

DepEd and ACT will send formal letters to CSC and DBM to present their positions on the issue of overtime pay for their comments.

“Teachers are our education frontliners. If not for dedication and hard-work, education will not continue especially amid a pandemic. We should be able to provide our teachers adequate support and just compensation for the important work and service they provide the Filipino people,” Castro said.