Post date: Feb 21, 2018 8:57:27 AM



The recent statement from the budget department’s secretary about doubling public school teachers’ pay has sparked arguments and opposing opinions among different sectors.

According to Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno, the planned salary increase “is not a priority at this time”, which directly contradicts President Rodrigo R. Duterte’s promise to the public. All his remarks made the educators blow a fuse as this year marks the start of the increase of up to 100% of the salaries of police officers and soldiers. Most, if not all public school teachers, must be hurting upon hearing this headline as evidenced by the protests made by some groups of teachers.

The principle of triage might be able to explain this issue. The word ‘triage’ is commonly used in the medical field, which talks about the sorting and allocation of treatment to patients according to a system of priorities designed to maximize the number of survivors as defined on Decisions on who should be taken care of first are made according to the urgency of the patients’ need for care. Thus, careful and sound prioritization must be made by the health professionals to save as many lives as possible. On the other hand, the idea of triage can also be applied in other settings, which in this case, is the government’s programs. As stated on the same source, the word can also mean the assigning of priority order to projects on the basis of where funds and other resources can be best used, are most needed, or are most likely to achieve success. Apparently, the budget secretary must not be considering the teachers’ sentiments on his top list and we can’t do much about his point of view. What we can do as educators is to continue what we do best – to nurture our youth to the best of our abilities and quietly hope to get what is due of us, soon.