A bill raising the chalk allowance of public school teachers to P3,500 annually is now under consideration in Senate after it was delivered to the floor on Wednesday.
Senate Bill 812 aims to raise the "teaching supplies allowance" of teachers from P1,500 to P3,500 to increase their daily budget and allow them to use "computer and Internet-use supplies" in the classroom.
"In this digital age, there are computer-related supplies the teacher uses, and these must be considered in computing the supplies they need," said Senate Minority Leader Ralph Recto, the bill's author.
Although he admits the proposed increase is not enough, he believes it will "somehow enrich the way they teach" public school students.
"It may be a mere speck in the budget but it cannot be dismissed as unimportant. Chalks, and pens, papers and cartolinas are to teachers as what bullets and combat rations are to soldiers," Recto stressed.
Based on Department of Education (DepEd) data, there are 797,119 teachers, meaning the new chalk allowance would cost P2.78 billion.
An additional P1.59 billion is required to fund the new addition beyond DepEd's set budget of P1.195 billion.
Under the bill filed by Recto and Senate Committee on Civil Service chaired by fellow minority Senator Sonny Trillanes, P1,500 will be appropriated in the DepEd budget, and the P2,000 will be shouldered by PAGCOR.— Rie Takumi/VVP, GMA News Source: GMA News