About 48,700 teachers in Papua New Guinea will receive an increase in salaries and allowances for the next three years.
This follows an agreement signed yesterday between the Teaching Services Commission and the Teachers Association.
Witnessing the signing were Education Vice-Minister Gisuwat Siniwim and the Department of Personnel Management secretary John Kali.
The three-year agreement will be effective from Jan 1. It lapses on Dec 31, 2016.
It provides an increase in base salaries and Teaching Service allowances.
Other increases include: Head teachers responsibility allowances, multi-grade teaching allowances; boarding school duty allowances; rural remote disadvantage allowance and domestic market allowances for substantive TSO7 and above ranging from K3, 000 to K15, 000 (US$1,137 - US$5,685).
Teaching Service Commission chairman Baran Sori said negotiations began last April. The final agreement was reached on 25 October.
“The increase is to recognise teachers’ continuous work pressure and inconveniences, work conditions, extra-curricular activities and workloads from the increase in class sizes,” he said.
He encouraged teachers to be passionate about their work and display loyalty and commitment as it was a noble profession.
Teachers Association national president Tommy Hecko said they would be committed in their profession.
He said teachers had the important role of imparting knowledge. The agreement includes salary scale adjustment from the current TSO1 to TSO2 and TS11 to TS12.
Entry salary point for primary teachers will be TSO2, high school and secondary schools will be TSO3 and national high school TSO4. Technical colleges’ entry level is elevated from TSO5 to TSO6.
Meanwhile, the PNG Government has been urged to review the tax law in the country.
The national General Secretary for the PNG Teachers Association, Ugwalumba Mowana, made the call during the signing of a memorandum of agreement for the determination of salaries and allowances in the teaching service 2014 to 2016 between the Teaching Service Commission and the PNG Teachers Association at the PNG Education Institute in Port Moresby yesterday.
Mowana appealed to the Government through Education Vice Minister Gisuwat Mangere Siniwin, who was there to witness the signing ceremony.
He said that the teachers are now happy that their pay will be increased as of January 1 next year by 10 per cent, but the taxes will again reduce their salary.
The salary after tax does not and will not cater for the teachers to survive for the next two weeks or so.
And this does not affect teachers alone, it also affects the low income earners in this country, he said.
The heavy taxes on the salaries discouraged low income earners, so people still moved from job to job seeking better salaries. Mowana appealed to the Government to look into the law and review it by reducing the tax in the country.
Download the teachers' salary increase agreement below.
Get Education News through Email: Subscribe Now