Marikina 2nd District Rep. Stella Luz Quimbo has batted for the passage of a bill seeking to provide monthly P1,500 internet allowance for all public school teachers to help them effectively conduct online classes.
She said apart from purchasing a laptop or computer with basic specifications, paying for internet has become a regular monthly expense for the school teachers, given continuous online class sessions.
“These additional expenses for teachers will use up disposable income that could have gone to other household needs,” Quimbo said, noting an entry-level public school teacher at Salary Grade 11 earns a basic pay of P22, 316 a month.
“Thus, the government must now step in to provide our teachers with additional support to cover such expenses, which could not have been anticipated prior to the pandemic.”
Quimbo, a former economics professor, filed House Bill No. 7799 or the proposed “Internet Allowance for All Public School Teachers Act” to promote and improve the economic status of teachers and assist them in providing quality education to their students.
“The quality of our students’ learning greatly depends on their teachers and the efficiency of instruction. Today, that connection hinges on stable internet. It is the role of the government, in its ultimate pursuit to establish and maintain quality education, to equip our teachers with the tools they need to deliver their lessons, especially during these unprecedented times,” she said.
HB 7799 provides that the grant of the cash allowance shall be limited to teachers who are engaged in the blended lending program in public basic education. The allowance shall only be granted in the implementation of the blended learning program for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Upon the effectivity of the proposed Act, the Department of Education (DepEd), in coordination with the Department of Budget and Management (DBM), shall ensure that the allowance is immediately released to all public schools.
The amount necessary for the implementation of the proposed Act shall be charged against the appropriations of the DepEd for the current fiscal year. Thereafter, the funds shall be provided in the annual General Appropriations Act.