Senate Bill 135 is an act that aims to upgrade the minimum salary level of teachers. It intends to raise it from the current salary grade level of 11 to salary grade 19, which grants Php 42,099 at the entry-level. It was filed in 2016 and is continuously being pushed to the discussion until today.
Photo from Educo.org
The rationale behind the upgrade is primarily due to public school teachers being severely underpaid, especially “given their workload and role in the society” as the bill puts it. They are tasked with enormous responsibilities and are expected to deliver, but with very little compensation.
It also harms incentives for teachers to improve or to continue teaching. There is actually a scarcity of teachers in the Philippine public school system and a large part of that is due to low salaries. Individuals are discouraged by the low pay and low prospects of the field here.
While progress for the bill has been slow, its proponents are hopeful that it can be brought up once more. With President Duterte promising an increase in teacher’s salaries, many are hopeful that he adheres to it. The clamor from the public is also likely to make the topic more prominent in Congress.
Are you in favor of an increase in teachers’ salary? Tell us why or why not in the comments!