SC President joins panel discussion in nationwide educators’ congress
Student Council President Lysandra Beatrice Ocampo had the honor of acting as a panelist for the 10th Annual Educators’ Conference (AECON), an event organized by REX Bookstore, last October 18 at the Marriott Hotel’s Grand Ballroom.
Around 800 educators around the country attended AECON. The two-day gathering aimed to create and connect the local education industry’s leaders and decision-makers with the latest approaches and advancements in education.
On the day of the panel, Ocampo was invited to partake in a discussion regarding the modern-day student’s perspective on education. She was accompanied by Mrs. Rea Jimenez, the Student Council Moderator and Coordinator of Student Activities and Services.
The recently filed “No Homework” Bill was a topic that sparked a heated debate among participants. For Ocampo, the discussion highlighted how a student’s mental and physical health were affected by their environments.
“As a Senior High School student, I expounded upon the pressures I was dealing with, especially regarding my college entrance exams,” Ocampo said.
Ocampo also attended a seminar given by Ms. Lovelaine Basillote, who is the Executive Director of the Philippine Business for Education. Ms. Basillote said that in order for the Philippines to achieve “the teachers it desires,” future educators must be given opportunities to enhance their current abilities, while taking into account their mental, physical, and emotional health.
The talk made Ocampo see her teachers in a more vulnerable light. “In the classroom, [teachers] are expected to remain level-headed and objective,” Ocampo explained. “The reality, however, is that they are just as human as the students they cater to.”
Another pressing issue raised at AECON was the quality of education among rural school districts. These schools often face concerns that stem from the current demographic and economic state of rural areas, the lack of technological infrastructure, and the difficulty of hiring and retaining teachers.
The Philippines recently ranked last in terms of Reading Comprehension, Mathematics, and Science in an evaluation made by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Given the results, Ocampo believes that addressing the country’s insufficient education system is crucial to the development of the Philippines as a whole.
Days after the conference, Ocampo said that her view on educational institutions, especially SSC-Manila, changed. “St. Scho’s definitely gone a long way from when I first started high school. But now I know there is still room for improvement.”
Ocampo cited the first day of the school year, when Dr. Jonna Marie Lim, the high school principal, asked the students to write down a rule they found unnecessary or confusing. Dr. Lim then explained as to why these rules were set in place.
“This is a good sign,” Ocampo said. “I believe that if St. Scho continues to foster more transparency, not only from its own students, then a more understanding environment would arise and mutual trust will be a foundation well-established.”