Senate Bill No. 663

Sen. Bam: Execute pay hike for teachers, not just “tokhangers”

Senator Bam Aquino expressed disappointment over the government’s pronouncement that public school teachers and other government workers will have to wait until 2020 to enjoy an increase in their meager salaries, saying many of them are buried in debt amounting to P171 billion.

“If we can do it for policemen, we must also increase pay for our teachers, nurses and other government workers,” said Sen. Bam, referring to the recent salary hike given to members of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

“Our teachers play a major role in ensuring our graduates are job-ready and poised for success. By educating our youth, teachers can influence the fate of the country,” added Sen. Bam.

Sen. Bam said teachers cannot afford to wait until 2020 for an increase in salary as they are experiencing personal burdens, including debt problems.

According to Sen. Bam, the P171 billion debt of teachers from legitimate lending institutions is due to a confluence of factors, including inadequate wages, delayed salary while some use the money to cover the cost of their teaching materials.

“Tulungan naman natin ang ating mga guro, nars at iba pang government workers na mapagaan ang kanilang buhay sa pamamagitan ng dagdag na suweldo, lalo na ngayong tumataas ang presyo ng mga bilihin,” said Sen. Bam.

Sen. Bam has filed Senate Bill No. 704 or the Basic Education Teachers Pay Increase Act, which provides a P10,000 increase across the board increase to all teaching and non-teaching personnel of the country’s public school system.

Sen. Bam also filed Senate Bill No. 916 or the Comprehensive Nursing Act, and Senate Bill No. 663 or the Nurse in Every Public School bill.

Bam proposes one nurse in every public school

Sen. Bam Aquino has filed a measure seeking to employ at least one registered nurse in every public school to provide students access to basic health care services and open employment opportunity to Filipino nurses.

 “Our students and our teachers should have quick access to basic health care and assistance in schools,” said Sen. Bam in Senate Bill No. 663.

 “Having a nurse in every school emphasizes the value of health, nutrition and well-being as part of the formation of our Filipino children. And with over 45,000 public schools, we create more meaningful jobs for our nurses,” he added.

 Sen. Bam pointed out that nurses are as important as other support personnel in the school system as they attend to the physical and mental-health needs of students, spearhead programs to promote nutrition and contribute health-related content in the curriculum.

 “Sa iilang paaralan, ang mga guro pa po natin ang nag-aalaga ng mga batang may sakit o nasusugatan. A nurse in every public school will safeguard the well-being of the students and faculty by attending to health-related issues and accidents,” he said.

 The measure mandates the Department of Education and the Department of Health to employ at least one registered nurse in every public school.

 The nurse will be responsible for improving the delivery of public health care services and providing relevant and timely education on wellness, hygiene, sanitation and other health safety measures to public school students.

 Nurses employed will receive a monthly stipend equal to salary grade 15, consistent with the mandatory minimum entry-level pay for government nurses under Republic Act No. 9173, otherwise known as the Philippine Nursing Act of 2002.

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