Teachers’ group reiterates its call for vacation pay
The Teachers’ Dignity Coalition reiterated its call for a proportional vacation pay if its demand for an extended school break will not be granted by the Department of Education.
“Kung talagang magbubukas na ang klase sa August 22, nakahanda po ang ating mga guro. Matagal na rin naman naming gustong bumalik ang face-to-face classes, gayunman, dapat pa ring maiklaro ang usapin ng bakasyon at PVP at ang obligasyon ng DepEd sa ating mga guro,” Benjo Basas, TDC chairperson, said.
The group asked DepEd to give teachers a longer break, addingthat they have not enjoyed their two-month vacation
“Kagaya ngayong araw, marami kaming natanggap na ulat na required nang mag-report sa school ang mga teacher, eh sa August 22 pa ang pasukan. Kalagitnaan lamang ng Hulyo natapos ang official tasks ng mga guro for school year 2021-2022, then nag-enrichment, remedial classes at enrolment noong July 25, nag-Brigada Eskwela mula August 1 at may mga in-service training program pa for this week. Eh wala talagang naging pahinga ang mga guro natin,” Basas said.
On August 3, Basas said that the DepEd Legal Service released an opinion not in favor of the teachers’ claim of a two-month school break.
“Based on applicable law and regulations on the matter, this Office is of the opinion that teachers are not entitled to a two-month vacation leave, and in fact, the start of the school year is mandated by law to commence no later than the last day of August,” the opinion signed by Rhoan Orebia said.
In its rejoinder, the TDC pressed its request for PVP.
“Granting without conceding that teachers do not have the usual vacation leave, teachers are entitled, however to proportional vacation pay which is equivalent to 70 days of summer vacation plus 14 days of Christmas vacation as per Section 6 of the M.C. No. 41, s. 1998. Additionally, it is an established practice that the two-month summer vacation is the expected vacation of teachers, and for good reason– teaching is an exceptionally draining responsibility– physically, mentally, and emotionally,” Basas said.