Teachers’ protest to welcome school year
The Teachers’ Dignity Coalition (TDC) and Ating Guro Partylist staged a protest in Welcome Rotonda that featured lighting of candles, a noise barrage and poetry and street theater performances to bring their messages to the government.
“Education sector gets the highest attention every school opening, however, the plight of the teachers remains almost unnoticed.” Said Benjo Basas, the group’s national chairperson and a Caloocan City teacher himself.
Basas said that while the government has been consistently claims its preparedness for another school opening even for the K-12 implementation, it continuously ignores the just demand of public school teachers for the enactment of a P10, 000 across-the-board increase in their salaries.
“The spirit of this proposal has been crafted since 1991, no president since the time of President Corazon Aquino has acted to put it into law.” Basas added. “Worse, since President Noynoy Aquino took over as the country’s chief executive in 2010, there is no salary increase initiative from his administration. The adjustments in our salaries in 2011 and 2012 were actually provided under the salary standardization law 3 that was enacted in 2009, during the term of President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.” He continued.
Basas also asked the government to clarify its earlier pronouncement that it would provide an incentive equivalent to one month salary this June, the executive order however says that it would either be at P5000 or equivalent to one month salary.
Apart from these welfare issues the groups also reiterated the calls for suspension of the K-12 program and challenge the government to resolve urgent matters in education first. Also in the protest are members of the Suspend K-12 Coalition. The protest started at 5:30PM in Welcome Rotonda, aside from candle lighting and noise barrage, the teachers also presented songs, poems and skit to bring the message to the government and the general public.
Basas said that while they have grievances, they will ensure that the first day of classes would be attended by the teachers. Thus, they have scheduled the protest in a latter part of the day, just in time that classes are already dismissed in most schools.
“Teachers are as excited as the students in this season and we will make sure that we will meet them…” Basas ended.
Benjo Basas, 0920-5740241\
May 31, 2015
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