Padilla: It is high time to end ‘abono’ system among public school teachers

Published January 25, 2023, 2:35 PM

by Mario Casayuran

Senator Robinhood C. Padilla on Wednesday, January 25, sought and end to the “abono” situation of public school teachers who have to pay in advance for the needs of their students, out of their own pockets

Padilla said he was throwing his full support behind proposed measures providing additional benefits and privileges for public school teachers, who he hailed for being “second parents” of young Filipino learners.

The movie actor-turned senator stressed this during a public hearing by Senator Ramon Bong Revilla Jr., chairman of the Senate Committee on Civil Service, Government Reorganization and Professional Regulation on several bills that aim “to provide additional benefits and incentives to our public school teachers – the largest group among our civil servants.”

Padilla said that it is sad that the country’s public school teachers think of their students from the time they wake up to the time they go to sleep.

“And we let them pay in advance for their students’ needs out of their own pockets? This should not be the case,” Padilla said in his opening statement during a Senate committee hearing on the matter.

“Let us not allow our teachers to be weighed down with more burdens,” he added.

In seeking added benefits for teachers, Padilla pointed out that no less than the Constitution has decreed that education is the top priority of the government’s budget.

“I am throwing my full support behind the bills that will make sure teachers no longer need to pay in advance from their own pockets,” he said.

This is aside from teachers having to make more sacrifices in fulfilling their duties during elections, he added.

Discussed during the Revilla committee hearing werethe Teaching Supplies Allowance Act filed by Revilla, Senators Juan Edgardo ‘’Sonny’’ Angara, Jose ‘’Jinggoy’’ Estrada and Majority Leader Joel Villanueva; Additional Benefits for Teaching and Non-Teaching Personnel in Public Basic Education by Villanueva; and Additional Benefits and Privileges for Public School Teachers that will amend Republic Act No. 4670 or the Magna Carta for Public School Teachers authored by Revilla.

“The lasting impact of our teachers in the lives and future of our children cannot be overemphasized,” he stressed.

“With their guidance, the wisdom of our children began to emerge. It is only fitting that we focus on the needs of our teachers, because focusing enough attention on their well-being also means high esteem for the young people they shape and the future we look forward to,” Revilla said in mixed Filipino and English.