The Senate approved on Monday, November 9 a bill institutionalizing and increasing the teaching supplies allowance for public school teachers starting next year.
Senate Bill No. 1092, or the Teaching Supplies Allowance Act of 2020, was passed on third and final reading with 22 affirmative votes, no negative votes and no abstention.
Sen. Ramon Bong Revilla Jr., chairman of the Senate Committee on Civil Service, Government Reorganization and Professional Regulation, said that once signed into law, it will benefit more than 800,000 public school teachers.
SBN 1092, under Committee Report No. 14, is a substitute bill for SBN 42 introduced by Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto; SBN 75 introduced by Revilla; and, SBN 957 filed by Sen. Sonny Angara.
Under the measure, each classroom teacher will receive P5,000 for the school years 2021 – 2022 and 2022 – 2023. The allowance will further increase to P7,500 for the school year 2023 – 2024; and P10,000 for the school year 2024 -2025 onwards.
Revilla said the government could not afford a drastic increase given the present situation.
Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon, who was co-author of the measure, introduced the amendment spreading out the proposed increase of teaching supplies allowance to enable the government to shoulder the additional cost.
To make the measure responsive to the needs of the teachers, the bill mandates the Department of Education (DepEd) to conduct a periodic review and recommend the necessary increase based on the current prices of the materials.
The bill also provides that “the amount necessary for the grant of teaching supplies allowance per teacher shall be charged against the appropriations of the DepEd under the General Appropriations Act (GAA),” Revilla explained.
Revilla expressed hopes that the lower house adopts the Senate version and that the President immediately sign the same despite uncertainties of its funding because of the pandemic.
Currently each public school teacher receive P3,500 a year or P16 a day. (via Senate website)