Will the New Education Secretary Get His Proposed Teacher Salary Increase Bill Passed Now That He Is in Position?

This is a tough question for sure, but teachers are waiting patiently for any hint that the new secretary will make every effort to get his teacher salary increase bill proposed by Sen. Angara finally approved. When the last administration didn’t deliver on their long-promised salary increase, teachers hoped that Sen. Angara would be the hero to accomplish it. For years, teachers have been given promises that ended with the same disappointing fate. Now that a new secretary is appointed, hope for the increase is back.

It is very disappointing to note that in the Philippines, politicians often make promises during election campaigns that are forgotten once they are in office. Teachers are frequently targeted by these promises to help politicians rise to power. After elections, these promises are abandoned, and there is little effort to secure what the teachers were promised. Many bills for salary increases have been submitted, only to be discarded because other members won’t sign them. Politicians often claim budget constraints, but many believe this is not the whole truth.

Teachers are saddened that the Department of Education (DepEd) hasn’t been able to secure a meaningful salary increase. Previous tranches labeled as salary increases were perceived as a façade; teachers never truly felt the benefit due to heavy deductions for taxes, GSIS, Pag-ibig, and PhilHealth. In the Philippines, it seems teachers are unable to voice their concerns, which is devastating and heartbreaking.

With the appointment of Sen. Angara, teachers’ hopes are high that the teacher salary increase bill proposed by Sen. Angara will push through this year. A strong politician can and should fight for teachers more effectively than previous administrations. Teachers are most effective when motivated, and financial incentives are a key motivator. The new secretary must understand that teachers are looking forward to this significant change that was not achieved by the previous administration.

On a scale from 1 to 10, there is at least a 6 out of 10 hope that Sen. Angara will demonstrate his commitment to DepEd. If other cabinet members fail to support the bill, it will be tiring and heartbreaking. Teachers may lose trust in these officials and may seek better opportunities abroad if their needs are not met. A strong leader is needed to push through a one-time, meaningful salary increase without tranches. Giving teachers what they deserve could lead to a flourishing education sector. – Avril | Helpline PH