Last week (September 7-9, 2015), two representatives from Teach for the Philippines visited GenSan and Sarangani. Jan Kevin Rivera, Government Relations Manager and Christiana Ubaña, Government Relations Associate had meetings with the local officials and DepEd representatives for a possible collaboration with their organization.
Teach for the Philippines is a for-purpose, non-government organization that works to provide all Filipino children with an inclusive, relevant, and excellent education. They enlist the country’s promising young leaders to teach for at least two years in public schools throughout the Philippines. Through their experiences in the classroom, Teach for the Philippines transforms these leaders into lifelong advocates for education equity.
“We identify, develop, and support a community of leaders working to end educational inequity,” says Jan. “We are one in belief that education is everyone’s business and solutions come from everywhere.”
So far Teach for the Philippines has 8 partnered LGUs in the country – 4 in National Capital Region (Marikina, Mandaluyong, Navotas and Quezon City); 2 in Laguna (Biñan & Sta Rosa); and 2 in Mindanao (Cagayan de Oro City and Surgiao). Their organization is planning to expand their advocacy in other parts of the country. They wanted GenSan and Sarangani to include in their list of partners for their cause. There is no commitment yet. As of the moment they are reaching LGUs and talking to different people about their advocacy.
“The context of Mindanao is really interesting. I hope there will be more areas in the future.”
Teach for the Philippines have already produced alumni in their programs. “The final stage of The Teach for the Philippines Fellowship is Alumni Pathways. Their leaders commit to education equity beyond the 24-month Fellowship program, whether they remain in the classroom, move on to education administration, work in government or the corporate sector, or join a different social development path. A key part of the Alumni Pathways is Teach for the Philippines’ Alumni Mentorship Program. Teach for the Philippines’ Alumni Mentorship Program supports the transfer of valuable leadership knowledge through mentoring. This is an opportunity for second year Fellows to forge a meaningful relationship with a respected professional, who believes in developing young leaders as part of nation building. The Teacher Fellows are responsible for actively engaging their mentors to further their learning and professional development. A mentor facilitates learning by asking thought-provoking questions and sharing invaluable career advice that help Teacher Fellows to reflect on their own experiences.”
Teach for the Philippines also help champion reading and literacy in their partnered schools. They also help build the character of the students before they engage them in the learning process. Now on its third year, they are still committed in their vision that by 2050, all Filipino children will have access to an excellent and relevant education.
“We have unconventional belief that everyone could be champion for education. No set of people has the monopoly of solutions. Let’s not look at the public educational system as something broken or hopeless. Every efforts count but these efforts need to be intelligent and sustainable. Let’s start thinking intelligently on what we can do on education,” says Jan.
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