Teachers from different schools in Metro Manila marched to Mendiola last Friday in Manila to commemorate World Teachers’ Day with a protest rally.
Led by the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) and ACT Teachers Party, they staged a National Day of Action for salary increase and against TRAIN Law of the Duterte Government.
Similar protests and actions were also held in Davao City, Cebu City, Southern Tagalog and Bicol regions.
According to Joselyn Martinez, National Chairperson of ACT, teachers experience the most oppression among government employees despite their leading role in social development.
The Duterte government failed in its promise to increase the salary of public school teachers unlike the military and police which was doubled this year, they said.
Teachers are also overworked due to oppressive policies like the Results-based Performance Management System and Philippine Standards for Teachers, they added.
They were force to attend different seminars and pay from their own pocket while their allowances are often delayed in arriving, Martines added.
According to Rep. France Castro of ACT Teachers Party, the P50 billion budget cut for basic education next year will definitely affect the budget for textbooks, feeding programs and other classroom materials.
The group also condemned recent harassments and intimidations against teachers.
This includes a threat of dismissal of Bacolod teachers if they push through with their planned mass leave. Police tried to prohibit Manila Public School Teachers from distributing leaflets and posters to their colleagues in the activity last October 4.
The teachers also slammed PNP Chief Oscar Albayalde about his warning of contempt to professors who teach ‘rebellious ideas’ to the students, citing that this is an attack following the ‘Red October’ Scare spread by the military and government cover up to the real issues such as inflation rate and TRAIN law. (Video and report by Joseph Cuevas)