DAVAO CITY- In the wake of the controversy on the disbursement of government savings, various teachers’ groups on Friday pressed the Aquino administration to increase the salary and incentives of public school teachers, saying “the government has neglected the education sector particularly the public school teachers since President Aquino rose to power four years ago.”
In a statement sent to DavaoToday, Arsenio Jallorina, chairperson of Ating Guro Partylist, on Friday wanted the government to implement a “P10,000 across the board wage increase for public school teachers.”
“PNoy’s supposed policy of reforms should be reflected down to the grassroots particularly in public education system. Since he became president four years ago, we have not received any salary increase,” Jallorina said.
He said there has been no salary increase since 2010 and added that the Aquino administration only implemented the two remaining tranches of the salary standardization law that was enacted during the time of former President Arroyo in 2009.
He proposed across-the-board productivity enhancement incentive (PEI) amounting to P15,000 per employee.
“Only one thing is certain in DAP [discursement acceleration program] mess, and that is the government has enough funds to increase the salary and bonuses of the public school teachers contrary to government’s claim of annual deficit,” Jallorina said.
“Since year 2007, the government is granting a P10,000 across the board performance incentive to public school teachers and government employees. Yet in year 2012 said incentive was cut by half,” he claimed.
Scrapping PBB under EO 80
The group wanted to scrap the Performance-based Bonus (Pbb) scheme, contained in Executive Order 80 of July 2012, branding such scheme as “unfair, divisive and deceptive.”
Under the scheme, a DepEd employee could only get a bonus, if one would be able to attain 90% of the year’s target output, attain 90% of each priority program or project targets, and achieve 100% of “good governance conditions”.
“As for teaching and non-teaching personnel of the schools, there will be no individual ranking at the school level. Thus, the performance category of the school shall determine the level of PBB that each employee will receive,” the guideline said.
On the contrary, employees who received a “below satisfactory” rating or who are found guilty of administrative or criminal charges, would be disqualified from receiving the PBB.
The PBB scheme, Jallorina said, is a merit-based scheme that grants monetary benefits to employees ranging from P5, 000.00 to P35,000.00 based on their ‘performance.’
“The teachers however, are critical of the scheme because the government specifically the Department of Education (DepEd) has no clear-cut policy on how to measure their performance that resulted to incentive disparity and demoralization when it was first implemented in school year 2012-2013,” he said.
Benjo Basas, National President of Teachers’ Dignity Coalition, also criticized the PBB scheme for its “defective implementation which resulted only to more problems in the bureaucracy.”
The group instead called for a standardized benefits or the productivity enhancement incentive in the amount of P15,000 for all the employees.
For instance, Basas said “the criteria have become controversial with the DepEd listing the drop-out rate, national achievement test (NAT) performance and the disbursement of school’s funds as bases of school’s performance, which was also become the basis of individual teacher’s performance.”
“All of those criteria have nothing to do with the performance of individual teachers, thus putting the majority of us to disadvantage. This is the main reason why some schools have resorted to cheating the NAT to get better result which clearly defeats the purpose both of the NAT and the PBB itself,” Basas said.
“Even the promise of a P35,000 incentive is a deception because it is only limited to the 1% of all the employees of the DepEd or the entire bureaucracy,” he said.
The Teachers’ Dignity Coalition said that “they still we believe that the scheme used by the government to reward the performing employees is defective and needed to be reviewed and amended.” (davaotoday.com)