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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Pension changes expected to reduce educator ranks by nearly 3,000

Education Secretary Eliezer Ramos Parés

By The Star Staff

For the 2022-2023 school year, the island Education Department will have 2,888 fewer teachers, administrative teachers and non-teachers as educators retire because of the changes in pensions that took effect in March.

The reduction in the number of teachers is the result of the debt adjustment plan that went into effect March 15, Education Secretary Eliezer Ramos Parés said Wednesday.

The official also anticipated a drastic drop in enrollment of 17.8 percent over the next four years.

The information was disclosed by Ramos Parés before the House and Senate Treasury committees, chaired by Rep. Jesús Santa Rodríguez and Sen. Juan Zaragoza Gómez, respectively, to evaluate the proposed budget of the Department of Education (DE).

Ramos Parés said the budget proposed by the government agency is $5 billion.

“Of this, $2.4 billion comes from the General Fund, $2.5 billion from federal funds, $5 million from internal sources and $9 million in other income,” he said.

Compared to this year, the proposed budget contemplates an increase of $142 million due to the Social Security payment initiative for teaching employees and the payment of salary increases to teaching and non-teaching staff contemplated in the 2022 fiscal plan.

The largest government entity in the government of Puerto Rico has a workforce of 54,515 teaching and non-teaching employees.

Currently, the DE has an active population of more than 259,000 students and more than 26,000 teachers at 860 elementary, secondary and all-level school campuses.

Ramos Parés specified that the current active enrollment for the 2021-2022 school year is 259,535 students.

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