File photo from the https://www.officialgazette.gov.ph
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Senator Loren Legarda emphasized the importance of teachers in the development of youth and society when she filed Senate Bill No. 2, which seeks to amend specific provisions of Republic Act No. 4670 or the Magna Carta for Public School Teachers to provide additional benefits and protection to teaching and non-teaching personnel in public schools across the country.

The guarantee of tenure security and fair pay for school staff is one of the main changes made by SBN 2. Their fundamental rights on gender equality are likewise protected by the suggested measure.

“The minimum base pay for teachers working in public schools starts at Salary Grade 11 or roughly P25,400 per month. We want to give them fair salaries through this measure that we just filed,” Legarda explained.

“We care for our teachers as they are vital to our education system, and just like our healthcare workers, they, too, are at the forefront,” she added.

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SBN 2 seeks to guarantee protection with respect to their rights, benefits, and leave, as well as heavier penalties for violating any of the provisions stated in the measure.

As a long-time advocate of quality education, Legarda has been pushing for the better welfare of teachers.

Among the laws she passed to improve the education system were RA 10931, the Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education Act, and RA 10533, or the Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013. She also filed SBN 1 or the One Tablet, One Student Act as her top priority bill in the Senate this 19th Congress.

Through her efforts as a lawmaker, public school teachers are now receiving incentives every World Teacher’s Day, celebrated on the 5th day of October every year. Legarda, as then Chair of the Senate Committee on Finance, allocated P800 million under the General Appropriations Act (GAA) for this incentive.

She also filed the Magna Carta for Private School Teachers to address the welfare of teachers in private institutions.

“We owe much of our achievements to our teachers and non-teaching personnel, and we want to promote their social, economic, and professional status. We must create policies that are beneficial to them so they would be able to help their families as much as they help our youth enrich themselves through quality education,” Legarda said.

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