Another batch of forty (40) Public School Teachers from the Navotas National High School (NNHS) underwent the Ninoy & Cory Aquino Leadership Journey (NCALJ) last January 24 to 25, 2015. Together with their principal, Dr. Maria Cristina Robles, all teacher-participants spent two days in Quezon City, to undergo the NCALJ for Public School Teachers.
The Leadership Journey for Public School Teachers is one of Ninoy & Cory Aquino Foundation’s (NCAF) pioneering program in forming and inspiring teachers into loving and caring servant-leaders. Modeled after Ninoy and Cory Aquino’s own brand of spiritual-leadership, the teachers were guided through personal reflection, values-centering, and prayer.
The two-day Leadership Journey was filled with testimonies from notable teachers who shared their own insights on leadership and spirituality in teaching. Teacher Sabrina Ongkiko from Culiat Elementary School shared about her own life-experiences as a teacher and as one loved by God, saying: “Teaching isn’t about us, it’s about them [the students]. That’s making a difference.” Metrobank Outstanding Filipino Awardee Mr. Onofre Pagsanghan, also known as Mr. Pagsi, deepened this by imparting his more than sixty years of teaching experience: “For as long as I am able, for as long as my students understand what I am saying, I will continue to teach, for it is the meaning of my life.” Principal Juanita Alajar from Justice Cecilia Muñoz Palma High School (Payatas, Quezon City) emphasized the need for malasakit (compassion) not only to the students but also to colleagues and fellow teachers. Department of Education Undersecretary Rizalino Rivera also graced the event, showing support to the Filipino Public Teachers: “We are fighting for you. Whatever happens, we are here for you”.
(Clockwise: Teacher Sabrina Ongkiko, Mr. Onofre Pagsanghan, USEC Lino Rivera, and Principal Juanita Alajar)
“We are truly happy to have this 2nd run of Leadership Journey for Public School Teachers”, Mr. Lopa shared. Aside from the generous help of groups such as CS Foundation and Ang-Hortaleza Foundation, Mr. Lopa acknowledged that the commitment of Navotas National High School to undergo the Leadership Journey determined the success of the program.“This event will not be possible if not for the trust granted to us by the teachers of the school to join them in their respective journeys”, Mr. Lopa adds.
Some of the participants expressed their gratitude for undergoing the two-day Leadership Journey. Mrs. Estelita Sueno, a grade 9, Values Education teacher, congratulated NCAF, saying, “I learned that teaching is a vocation and not simply a job. Also, I learned that we need to help one another in order to give our students the love they need.” Another participant, Mrs. Edna Ramos, a fourth-year Araling Panlipunan teacher, shared that, “This seminar has taught me to lead life with love. True learning is not found in books, but rather being with the kids is the way we can really affect their lives.”
The 2nd Leadership Journey for Public School Teachers Run was made possible through the collective efforts of NCAF and its generous partners: CS Foundation and Ang-Hortaleza Foundation.
The Ninoy & Cory Aquino Foundation (NCAF) traces its roots to the Benigno S. Aquino, Jr. Foundation (BSAF), established by the late Senator’s widow in November 1983 to perpetuate his legacy. It seeks to build on the legacy of Ninoy and Cory Aquino by supporting activities that embody the spirit of People Power as a strong and positive force for social change in a robust democracy. Since 2008, the Foundation has made a deliberate effort to strengthen this advocacy through leadership formation development.
Navotas National High School (NNHS)
Founded in 1983 by Mayor Victor Javier, Navotas National High School, located at Barangay Sipac Almacen, Navotas, is home to over four thousand students. Through the leadership of Dr. Maria Cristina A. Robles, NNHS has made great leaps in teaching innovations and alternative learning practices, in fact, in 2012, NNHS was nominated for the DOST search for innovative practices in managing classes and won 2nd place in Excellence in Educational Transformation Awards.
The school’s thrust is to develop a new breed of morally upright individuals – disciplined, empowered, adaptive, and responsive to the changing environment. Equipped with the balance of knowledge, skills, and positive personal and social values, cultivated by their teachers and school officials, NNHS students are able to give genuine service to their families, communities, and country for the promulgation God’s infinite love for all.