Imposing parking fees on teachers to bring $10m in annual revenue, but unclear if teachers will benefit

Making teachers pay the full, unsubsidized price of parking in their workplaces will bring in millions in revenue for the schools, according to Education Minister Ong Ye Kung.

In a written reply to Non-Constituency Member of Parliament Leon Perera — who asked about the estimated annual revenue derived from the imposition of parking fees for teachers — Minister Ong revealed that it could range from $8 million to $10 million a year. The amount is split among the 360 primary schools, secondary school and junior colleges around the Singapore — a revenue that will be retained by the schools, disclosed the minister.

As big as that number is, it is unclear if that revenue will have any trickle-down benefit for the very people having the extra burden of paying parking fees at school car parks. It certainly would be a great thing to hear if the extra revenue generated from the imposed parking fees is passed down to Singapore’s educators.

Currently, teachers in primary and secondary schools and junior colleges park for free on the grounds of their workplaces — or at least pay fees below standard market rates. But come August, they will all have to pay a uniform parking rate. Teachers will have to pay $100 monthly during school terms to park at sheltered carparks, while it’s $20 monthly during school holidays in June, November, and December. Non-sheltered carparks are cheaper — it’s $75 a month during school terms and $15 a month during school holidays.

On top of the stresses of the classroom, long working hours, and overwhelming administrative workloads, Singapore’s car-dependant teachers will have to fork out between $720 to $960 a year to park at their workplaces.

The changes were imposed as part of the Public Service Division’s “clean wage” policy, which states that salaries should be fully accounted for with no hidden perks and privileges.

It’s funny because “perks and privileges” are currently being enjoyed by elected Members of Parliament who only pay a paltry $365 a year (or $1 a day) to park at all HDB carparks and at Parliament House.

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