Sara Duterte eyes return to classrooms by August, pay hike for teachers


MANILA, Philippines — Vice President-elect Sara Duterte, who will be appointed secretary education, said she will look for ways to raise teachers' salaries and that she is also looking to return to classroom learning by August.

At a press briefing Monday morning, Duterte, who took her oath of office the day before, said that President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has already given her instructions to review the implementation of the K-12 program of the Department of Education. 

Asked if DepEd would be pushing for face-to-face classes by August, the vice president-elect said: "We are targeting that, yes." 

"We'll look at how we'll be able to push that from the other accomplishments [of the department]," she also said when asked about calls to raise teachers' salaries. 

"Actually, the Duterte administration did do something about that," she also said, pointing to a salary increase to P23,877 from P19,077. An entry-level teacher, or Teacher 1, falls under Salary Grade 11 and gets a monthly salary of P25,439.

Duterte also disclosed that she and Education Secretary Leonor Briones have been in touch and have scheduled their first face-to-face transition meeting in Metro Manila "by June 25."

"I've not been briefed on the status of education nationwide so I haven't seen the data yet," she also said when asked about schools already implementing face-to-face classes. 

Teachers' group Alliance of Concerned Teachers said earlier Monday that the Philippines is the only country in the world that hasn't fully opened its schools yet. 

"Why has she allowed our schools to be closed for almost two years? We've been seeing the effects of the closure of schools in our students, and it is the teachers who are going to take the toll of this problem," ACT secretary-general Raymond Basilio told ANC's "Headstart" earlier Monday. 

Education Secretary Briones in May encouraged public and private institutions to return to holding in-person classes for Academic Year 2022-23.


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