Teachers welcome reconciled bill on allowance hike

Elizabeth Marcelo - The Philippine Star
Teachers welcome reconciled bill on allowance hike
Students of the Marikina Elementary School in Marikina City attend a two-hour class orientation before the formal school opening on August 23, 2023.
STAR / Walter Bollozos

MANILA, Philippines — Teachers groups Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) and Teachers’ Dignity Coalition (TDC) welcomed a reconciled bill by the Senate and the House of Representatives that would gradually increase the teaching allowance of public school teachers starting school year 2025-2026.

Among the key provisions of the reconciled bill is the gradual increase in the teaching allowance from the current P5,000 to P10,000 per teacher for SY 2025-2026 and beyond.

“This significant achievement represents a monumental step forward in our ongoing call for the government to prioritize the welfare and support of our esteemed public school teachers,” the group said in a press statement.

The ACT said that while it supported the House’s original version of the proposed bill, filed by ACT party-list, the reconciled version “is still a result of the endless effort of the public school teachers through lobbying and collective actions in aid of legislation.”

“This progressive enhancement serves as a tangible recognition of the invaluable contributions made by our teachers and uplifting their work conditions from being undersupported and underpaid amid being overworked,” the ACT said.

The group, meanwhile, called on President Marcos not to veto the reconciled bill when it reaches his office.

“The President should keep in mind his responsibility to uphold the rights and well-being of our educators,” the ACT said.

Marcos had earlier vetoed a bill that seeks tax exemption for teachers’ duty honorarium during the 2022 elections.

Meanwhile, the TDC said that while it finds the P10,000 teaching allowance to be small, the passage of the reconciled bill is still a welcome development.

“The TDC says that they will closely monitor this situation and won’t allow another veto to occur,” the group said.

The TDC also reiterated that the P10,000 teaching allowance must be tax-free.

“This P10,000 per month allowance is really small. Nonetheless, we are still happy as this is a product of active lobbying and collaboration between our teachers and the lawmakers,” TDC national chairman Benjo Basas said in Filipino.

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