MANILA — Recognizing the hard work and dedication of the public school teachers, the Senate on Monday passed on third and final reading declaring the 5th day of October as National Teachers’ Day.
Senator Pia Cayetano, chairperson of the Senate committee on education, arts and culture, said Senate Bill 510 seeks to recognize teachers who dedicated their lives to shaping the minds of the youth and honing their characters.
Senate President Franklin M. Drilon said that the measure intends to rectify the long-standing absence of an official celebration of the nation’s teachers, and of the importance of their work in ensuring quality education for generations of Filipinos.
While the United Nations Organization for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO) has declared October 5 as World Teacher’s Day 30 years ago, Cayetano said, the Philippines has yet to officially celebrate its own National Teacher’s Day.
Cayetano said celebrating October 5 as National Teacher’s Day would recognize the Filipino teachers’ pivotal role in nation building and their commitment to mold the youth into capable and upstanding citizens.
Senator Cynthia Villar, principal author of the proposed measure, said the “teaching profession was one of the most influential professions whose contribution in shaping not only the minds but the values of the youth” was essential for the development of a nation.
Unlike many countries like Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, Villar said the Philippines, which has more than half a million-strong teaching force in public elementary and secondary education alone, has no official celebration of Teacher’s Day aside from the token commemoration of October 5 as World Teachers’ Day.
“The intention of this bill is to make such official declaration making October 5 of each year a special working holiday in celebration of the World Teachers’ Day,” she said.
“The teaching profession is not only about teaching skills and sharing information and knowledge. It is, in its true sense, teaching the love for learning and continuing education,” she added.