Lesson for the first day of classes, SY 2014-15:
Teachers take to the streets to demand increase in salaries

for teachers and employees

Manila   ■
Davao   ■ Nueva Viscaya     ■ Negros    Escalante, Negros 

 ■ Cebu 
Iloilo  ■ Aklan   ■ Bohol   ■ Butuan   ■  Southern Tagalog  Bicol   Marawi

Mendiola/ Gate7 of Malacanang Palace


June 2,  2014





Click here to view video of lighting rally by teachers near Gate 7 of Malacañang

Photos by ACT NCR Union

Click here to view video of Mendiola rally
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2/F Teachers' Center Building, Mines st. corner Dipolog st., Brgy. VASRA, Quezon City
Tel.Fax: (+63 2) 453 9116, (+63 2) 426 2238
E-mail: act_philippines@yahoo.com, actphilippines@gmail.com
Mobile: Mr. Benjamin Valbuena, ACT Chairperson (+63 916 -229 4515)
Ms. Francisca Castro, ACT Secretary-general (+63 917-8502124)

June 4, 2014

For Reference: Benjie Valbuena
National Chair
Alliance of Concerned Teachers
(+63 916 -229 4515)

Teachers vs BS Aquino: The War is On for Salary Increases for Teachers and Employees!

Teachers under the Alliance of Concerned Teachers were angry by Coloma’s announcement again that “there are no enough funds to cover its cost “ . The initial rush of activities on the day of school opening showed the teachers’ resolute will to fight out a just demand for salary increases. From the mountains of Cordilleras’ to the far end of Southern Mindanao, teachers wore their black armbands, hanged streamers, rallied on the streets and on the gates of Malacanan Palace itself with a single message: Increase teachers and employees’ salaries, now!!

“We deserve every single centavo that we have been demanding from this heartless and unproductive President in the halls of Malacanang, Mr. Benjie Valbuena, President of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers said. Teachers’ demand for a living wage is long overdue. BS Aquino must not claim that there were salary increases during his term. He is obliged to implement the law that teachers have fought for during GMA’s term.

“Hence, teachers have no obligations whatsoever to thank him in the first place. What we know is that under his term, our living conditions and that of the majority of the Filipino people have worsened, Mr. Benjie Valbuena added.
His policies that favored the rich and powerful, the US aggressors through a one sided EDCA and laws that have literally sold out our Motherland to his imperialist masters. But there is money in abundance in the tune of 1.3 trillion pesos for the Pork Barrel King, BSAquino himself.

“No amount of sweet words even from Luistro can soften the teacher’s will to go on mass leave if during the State of the Nation’s Address (SONA) – nothing was allocated for salary increase for teachers and employees in the proposed 2015 National Budget,” Mr. Benjie Valbuena ended.


▲Teacher Luis Sabala,  president of the Manila Public School Teachers Association (MPSTA), which is a member federation of the ACT NCR Union. and fellow teachers are pushed away from Gate 7 of Malacanang Palace. ▼



2/F Teachers' Center Building, Mines st. corner Dipolog st., Brgy. VASRA, Quezon City
Tel.Fax: (+63 2) 453 9116, (+63 2) 426 2238
E-mail: act_philippines@yahoo.com, actphilippines@gmail.com
Mobile: Mr. Benjamin Valbuena, ACT Chairperson (+63 916 -229 4515)
Ms. Francisca Castro, ACT Secretary-general (+63 917-8502124)

June 3, 2014

For Reference: Benjie Valbuena
National Chair
Alliance of Concerned Teachers
(+63 916 -229 4515)

Teachers to Aquino: Pork funds are more than enough to cover salary increase of teachers and employees

The Alliance of Concerned Teachers reiterates its call for the immediate enactment of a law that will increase teachers and non-teaching personnel’s salary and calls for the immediate abolition of all pork barrel funds which is solely under PNoy’s control.

“His (PNoy) claim that he is against corruption seems to be just a gimmick as many of those implicated in the pork barrel scam are his allies, friends and some even works for him in the Cabinet. Will a leader against corruption allow corrupt people to work with him? I guess the answer is clear, ang kurakot ay makikipagtrabaho lamang sa kurakot, said Mr. Benjie Valbuena, ACT National Chairman.

With Janet Napoles’ submission of her list of politicians and government officials involved in the pork barrel scandal to the Department of Justice and Senate, two of PNoy’s cabinet secretaries were included namely Secretaries Abad of Department of Budget and Management and Alcala of Department of Agriculture.
“Our demand for salary increase is being dismissed easily by this present administration citing that there are no enough government funds to cover the cost of the increase and that it will cause budget deficit. No money for teachers, but billions are there for his friends and allies (which includes Alcala and Abad) to put in their pockets. Maybe it is the reason why Sec. Abad is against our demand for increase because he is afraid that the fund he might corrupt will be lessened.
Secretary Alcala on the hand seems to have converted the entire agriculture department of agriculture into a big milking cow as most of the projects involved in the pork barrel scandal went through the department. Ang kapal ng mukha n’yang gawin ito samantalang namamatay na sa gutom at hirap ang mga magsasaka!” lamented Mr. Valbuena.

“These two officials have not reason stay in their position anymore. They need to go. Mag-resign na sila unless gusto nilang kuyogin pa sila ng mamamayan,” ended Mr. Valbuena.





Published: Mon, June 02, 2014

Teachers threaten mass leave without pay hike

Public school teachers seek a salary increase from P18,000 to P25,000 monthly. (Image captured from a Solar News video clip)
Public school teachers seek a salary increase from P18,000 to P25,000 monthly. (Image captured from a Solar News video clip)

It's either a salary increase or a mass leave.

This was the warning aired by about a hundred public school teachers who stormed Mendiola in Manila Monday afternoon (June 2).

Benjie Valbuena, national chairman of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT), lamented that the entry level salary of teachers should increase to P25,000 monthly from the current P18,000 to allow them to make ends meet.
He said the protest action was only the first of a series of what he called a "sustained heightening form of action" – which could culminate in a mass leave of public school teachers if no action is taken on their demand in the next few months.

He added that this could translate into 55,000 teachers not reporting for work in the National Capital Region (NCR) alone.

Malacañan has said it is open to a wage hike - but probably by next year.
In the meantime, Secretary Edwin Lacierda, presidential spokesman, appealed to the group to consider the plight of students who will bear the brunt of a nationwide mass leave of teachers.

Lacierda explained that teachers' salaries are covered by the Salary Standardization Law, along with the salaries of all government employees.
The last tranche of the salary adjustment mandated by the law will be carried out this year - with a monthly pay of P18,549 for Level 1 public school teachers.


- Solar News with reports from Dave de Castro and Ina Andolong




Back to school
By Neil Honeyman
An Independent View
Monday, June 2, 2014

SUMMER is over.
About 20.9 million students return to school today.

The Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) will welcome the opening of classes by having a nationally-coordinated protest. They are seeking an increase in their basic salary from P 18,549 (which is the Civil Service Salary Grade 11) to P25,000 per month, and that of the non-teaching staff from P 9,000 to P 15,000 per month.

Gualberto Dajao, ACT regional president, says there has been no salary increases for teachers. Is this true? Now that teachers are on the standard Civil Service pay scale, then surely they receive salary increases in line with other civil servants.

Anyhow the ACT-Western Visayas says that teachers will assemble in front of Rizal Elementary School at 5 p.m. today and will march to the Fountain of Justice at Luzuriaga Street, Bacolod City.

How many teachers will attend?

I am not sure how many teachers belong to the ACT which has a party-list member of the House of Representatives, Antonio Tinio. He has authored House Bill 245 seeking the salary increases. Senator Trillanes also supports the idea of teachers being paid much more and has proposed that they are placed on Salary Grade 20 which corresponds to P36,000 per month.

Private schools are being challenged by the salaries being paid to public school teachers. The steady exodus of teachers from the private to the public sector will increase if the ACT demands are met.

Private schools experience cost increases which have to be passed on to those who send students to these schools. The Department of Education (DepEd) sends out an annual directive to the private schools stating that 70 percent of any fee increases should be allocated to teachers’ salaries. I do not believe that private schools always obey this instruction, partly because the private schools’ cost structure is substantially different from the public schools. Private schools spend more on security and on maintaining and enhancing their buildings. Some private schools even have air-conditioning.

DepEd’s lack of effective response to the damage caused by Yolanda is disappointing. The typhoon struck in early November 2013 while the 2014 budget was still being discussed in Congress. Budgetary constraints are being used too often by DepEd to not undertake urgent tasks.

DepEd has a budget allocation of P337 billion for 2014. This should be enough to build the schools and classrooms necessary to implement our compulsory education system. It is regrettable that much time is wasted by soliciting funds from various worthy bodies when the funds should be made available direct from DepEd.

Last week, for example, it was announced that public elementary and high schools in Bacolod City will receive classrooms funded by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor), the Bacolod Filipino-Chinese Chamber of Commerce Industry, and the Filipino-Chinese community. Why aren’t these classrooms paid for by DepEd? It has the money. It involves expensive time-wasting when the begging bowl is passed around charitable organizations.

DepEd Secretary Armin Luistro says that teachers’ salaries would be increased “so long as there is adequate funding.” Luistro needs to show decisive leadership. If he thinks teachers should be paid more, he should put his proposal in the 2015 budget which is now being prepared. He will be challenged by his cabinet colleagues who have their own departments to run, and by Congress.

DepEd needs professional management.

Sunstar June 2, 2014



On Salary Increase & Corruption

Government says it needs 5 billion pesos yearly to upgrade public teachers' salaries. Peanuts! According to a World Bank study, the Philippines lose 100 billion pesos to corruption, every year, on the average. Hinay-hinay sa kurakot pag may time para may matira sa salary upgrading. No wonder, public school teachers are at the forefront of the struggle against

-- Dr. David Michael San Juan, DLSU Manila






Teachers demand salary increase
By Maricar B. Brizuela
Philippine Daily Inquirer
4:52 am | Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

MANILA, Philippines–Around 100 public school teachers and members of militant groups pushed for a salary increase for educators during a rally in Mendiola, Manila, on Monday afternoon, the first day of the school year.
The Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) Philippines together with student groups that included Kabataan party list, National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP), League of Filipino Students (LFS) and Anakbayan carried an oversized mock report card marked with the letter “F,” which they said “signified President Aquino’s failures in various fields of competency.”
The report card was later burned by the protesters near the Mendiola Peace Arch.

ACT national chair Benjie Valbuena said the mass action was aimed at seeking a solution to the “perennial problems of public education in the

“We want to press the Department of Education and the present administration to immediately enact a law increasing the wage of public school teachers and employees,” ACT party-list Rep. Antonio Tinio said in a speech during the rally.
In July, Tinio filed House Bill No. 245, which pushes for an increase in the minimum monthly salaries of public school teachers, specifically, P25,000 for them and P15,000 for nonteaching personnel.

But this April, President Aquino announced that there would be no salary increase for government employees this year because of the lack of funds.
For high school teacher Marissa Peñaflor, who has been teaching Math at Carlos P. Garcia High School in Pandacan for almost 30 years, the basic salary given to teachers is not enough to support their present needs especially now that she is sending two of her children to college.

Peñaflor recalled that it has been more than six years since her salary went up by P6,000. This was during the term of then President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, she said.

“We ask the President to increase the budget for education so that we teachers will be able to support our needs,” Peñaflor told the Inquirer.

The 53-year-old high school teacher also noted that because of the tax deducted from their monthly income on top of payments for loans they were forced to make, a new teacher sometimes takes home only P3,000 a month.
For Valbuena, the proposed increase in the salary of teachers was not too excessive and would not cause a budget deficit for the national government.
“This increase will only cost around P3 billion in a year, a small amount compared to the billions of public funds wasted in the hands of corrupt
politicians,” he said.

The groups, who gathered at Mendiola, also slammed the Aquino administration’s “continued incompetence” in addressing education problems.
Valbuena shared that in the Calabarzon and Central Luzon areas, Camarines Sur, Bacolod sand Bukidnon, class sizes grew from 50 to 90 students, almost double the previous number.

He added that the problem of overcrowding was made worse by a shortage of books, chairs, classrooms, facilities and even teachers, thus affecting the quality of education in the whole country.

It was noted that in some schools such as Corazon Aquino Elementary School in Quezon City, teachers had to split a normal-sized classroom into two in order to accommodate at least 60 students.
“Sometimes teachers are even forced to shell out money from their own pockets to buy the basic materials needed for class,” Valbuena said.

Read more: http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/607866/teachers-demand-salary-increase#ixzz33p4fBH9Z

Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook




house bills, in the news »
The true abandonment (Philippine Daily Inquirer 4 June 2014 editorial)
[ 4 Jun 2014 | No Comment ]

The true abandonment

The Philippine Daily Inquirer 4 June 2014 Editorial

(Read full editorial here: http://opinion.inquirer.net/75280/the-true-abandonment )

‘It seemed that in the DepEd’s view, taking to the streets to call for an increase in pay was tantamount to neglecting the millions of schoolchildren nationwide. “Let us draw the line at abandoning our children,” it intoned. “As educators and civil servants, let us always keep the interests of our learners in mind.”

‘That is an unfortunate, if not insulting, statement. Teachers, especially the public-school variety, are among the most patient, docile people around. They toil in the most parsimonious conditions, their classrooms, school supplies and general campus facilities the perennial poor relations of vastly better-funded private schools. They are obliged to manage classes whose volumes are beyond the viable norm, yet they soldier on. During elections they do double-duty as vote-counters—a perilous task that puts them in the crosshairs of violent competition among political factions—and even have to wait to be compensated for it.

‘And, since 2009, their entry-level pay has been pegged at P18,549—lower even than what fresh graduates initially get in the call-center industry. That last salary adjustment five years ago raised the teachers’ pay by P6,523, but here’s the cruel catch: It wasn’t given in one go, but in four tranches over four years, from 2009 to 2012. The adjustment mandated by law as due the public school teachers took years to implement, and the paltry sum still had to be broken down into nearly negligible installments.

‘Which other profession is subjected to indignities like this? Perhaps other government employees endure the same excruciatingly slow improvements in work benefits, but as opposed to, say, clerks in a mayor’s office, teachers surely deserve greater attention because of the unique work they do: Their wellbeing translates directly to the wellbeing of the children under their care. They can’t teach kids properly without proper training on their own, or adequate school facilities, or enough remuneration to sustain them in mind and body. Certainly they can’t be expected to be motivated to do their jobs well, never mind excel, if their pay remains shockingly low.

‘How much wage increase are the teachers seeking this time? From P18,549 to P25,000. Is that too high a figure for such a consequential job as teaching the hope of the motherland? The 1991 Congressional Commission on Education pegged the minimum monthly salary that teachers should be receiving at even a higher figure—P28,000.

‘Malacañang’s response to the teachers’ petition for a pay increase is quite hard to take. “There was no fund identified as source of the salary hike they are waiting for,” said Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. The same administration that coughed up billions of pesos under a curious mechanism called the Disbursement Acceleration Program now pleads penury when it comes to sparing a few million pesos for the welfare of some 550,000 hard-up public school teachers across the country.’

May pera sa pork at korupsyon, pero wala sa edukasyon!

Increase salaries of public school teachers and non-teaching personnel! P25,000 minimum monthly salary for teachers, P15,000 for non-teaching personnel!



 GMA Online news video


Solon joins education workers in march for higher salaries

14 March 2014

Reference: ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio (09209220817)

ACT Teachers Party-List Rep. Antonio Tinio joined teachers and non-teaching personnel in basic and higher education in a march from Morayta to Mendiola to demand higher salaries for workers in the education sector. The protest action coincides with the budget preparation phase, during which DepEd and CHED along with the other agencies draft their proposed 2015 budgets.
The education workers demand for a minimum monthly salaries of P25,000 for teachers in basic education, P26,878 (Salary Grade 16) for faculty in SUCs, and an additional P6,000 in the base pay of non-teaching staff. They demand for increases in the bonuses and allowances including chalk allowance and PERA.

Lastly, they call for tax relief measures that will make their earnings catch up with the increase in the prices of basic commodities. These include an increase of basic personal and additional exemptions to P75,000 and P40,000 per dependent as well as the raising to P60,000 the ceiling for tax-exempt bonuses.

These demands, Tinio maintained, are more than covered by the P945 billion presidential and congressional pork barrel still in the 2014 budget, which funds are expected to be proposed again in the next year.

“We have said every year that the biggest savings of government is on teachers and other school staff, along with those in other sectors,” said Tinio. ”This policy of tightening the belt of the education sector forces teaching and non-teaching personnel to live within starvation salaries and bonuses, and take on the workload of several persons due to lack of items.”

“As early as now, we are banging on the doors of DBM and Malacanang. We say to them–Let go of their pork and give these public funds to those who should benefit from them. Public monies are best invested on the education of our children and not line politicians’ pockets.” ###





30 April 2014
Reference: ACT Teachers Rep. Antonio Tinio (09209220817)

Propose pay hikes for gov’t employees in 2015 budget –solon to Aquino

On Labor Day, public school teachers and other government employees banged on the doors of President Aquino to heed their long-standing demand for salary increases.

ACT Teachers Party-List Rep. Antonio Tinio filed in July 2013 House Bill 245, which calls for at least P25,000 and P15,000 monthly salaries for public school teachers and non-teaching personnel, respectively. The measure now has the support of nearly half of the Lower House, with more legislators expected to sign as co-authors when Congress resumes session on May 5.

Public school teachers currently receive a minimum salary of P18,549 monthly (SG 11), while non-teaching personnel receive P9,000 (SG 1).

Tinio is also co-author to Anakpawis Party-List’s HB 3015, which calls for a P6,000 hike in the minimum pay of public sector workers.

“Two years have passed since government raised the salaries of its employees but the ordinary Filipino is battered daily by increases in the costs of living,” Tinio lamented, noting that, with a P1,022 family living wage (NCR), the P456 minimum wage forces families to live on a deficit of P566 each day.

“Government employees realize that their just demand faces an administration which has admitted its aversion to pay hikes.” Tinio noted that, as the Salary Standardization Law 3 was enacted in 2009, Aquino has not yet effected any salary increase until now, four years into his term.

“Our President therefore has a huge debt to state workers.”

“Since his administration is now preparing its proposed 2015 national budget, the time is ripe for Aquino to pay that debt,” Tinio said. “We challenge his administration to propose to Congress a provision for pay hikes in the 2015 budget.”

Without this proposal, Tinio added, Aquino should expect to be battered by protests from state workers, including the 600,000-strong bureaucracy from the public education sector. ###


Photos by ACT Davao


Retired DepED Master Teacher Gloria Arcenas offers a prayer for the success of the Salary Upgrading Campaign
Nueva Viscaya
Photos by ACT Nueva Viscaya, Alfredo Palec and Allan Apiado as indicated by the filenames
Negros Island
Photos by Clarizza Singson and Angelica Taruballes as indicated by the filenames

Taking to the streets to air their demands 

Photos by ACT Teachers Partylist - Escalante

Photos by Antonio Lim

Photos by Sine Panayonon

Southern Tagalog
Photos by ACT Teachers - Southern Tagalog

Photos by Julie Diccion

Photos by  Emeral Geeko

Photos by  Bicol Blends Sogabita

Photos by  Antonio Tolentino

Marawi City

ARMM TEACHERS OF MARAWI CENTRAL ELEM.PILOT SCHOOL, MARAWI CITY DIVISION - DEPED ARMM support the salary increase of teaching and non-teaching personnel of Deped. Enact House Bill 245 NOW! PASS THE HOUSE BILL 245!!!

Photo courtesy: Teacher Ashania Dimaampao