Assistant Minority Leader and ACT Teachers Representative France Castro insisted Sunday teachers need internet allowance for the implementation of blended learning for the school year 2020-2021.
Castro responded to the Department of Education’s (DepEd) statement that there is no basis to provide load or internet allowance to teachers.
Conducting blended learning modality in distance learning through a combination of online classes and modules require internet connection, she noted.
“Both methods require teachers to have internet connections for their training, online classes, and other output. With the already measly salaries of public school teachers barely able to provide for their personal needs and that of their families, the government must provide the necessary tools and gadgets to be able to perform their duties in the proposed new modes of teaching,” Castro said.
“Saying that there is simply no basis for DepEd to provide teachers a monthly internet allowance is simply insensitive. The DepEd cannot deny the need of teachers to access the internet to comply with DepEd requirements is basis enough for the DepEd to provide for a monthly internet allowance for teachers,” she added.
Solon wants internet allowance for teachers
According to Castro, the current P3,500-chalk allowance is not enough to pay for a stable internet connection for the whole school year.
“Chalk allowances or teaching supplies allowances are only given once a year to classroom teachers. Monthly internet allowances should cover all teachers, especially in the proposed modes of the teaching of the DepEd,” she said.
The lawmaker noted that aside from the online classes, teachers also need to attend online training and contact students through chats and video calls. Castro said the internet allowance for teachers could be under maintenance’s communication allowance and other expenses for operations.
“Teachers are frontliners too, so the government should ensure that they are supplied with sufficient PPEs (personal protective equipment) and adequate allowances to continue with the programs of the DepEd,” she said.
The teachers also called for additional funding for the printing of the modules.