CTFLC 2012 Awardees

CTFLC Lauds Dr. Estela C. Matriano

In its own little way and cognizant of all the exemplary accomplishments and valuable contributions, both nationally and internationally, CTFLC proudly honored Dr. Matriano during its traditional Christmas gathering held at her residence on December 10, 2011. The occasion was not only fun-filled and festive, but was more meaningful and memorable as Kapamilyang CTFLC paid tribute to Dr. Matriano by way of presenting her with a Plaque of Commendation and Appreciation, as embodied in the following text:

  • “We salute you for your long and illustrious career as a distinguished global educator and as a strong advocate for multicultural understanding and unity.
  • We deeply appreciate your unwavering support to advance the course of the Filipino Language Program in this part of the world.
  • We thank you for your leadership and for the honor that you bring to our profession and for the joy that you bring to our lives and to others whose lives you touch.”

It should recalled that Dr. Estela C. Matriano, a CTFLC Board Member, has reaped honors and received local and national awards in 2011, namely:

  • The “First Award” from Alliant’s International Multicultural Education, Research, Intervention and Teaching (I-MERIT) Committee, given April 26, 2011 at Alliant International University, San Diego for her dedicated service and significant contributions to the Campus I-MERIT Committee in fostering a diverse, multi-culturally and internationally engaged campus community.
  • The “Excellence in Education Award”, given at the 8th Annual Asian Heritage Awards Celebration on August 20, 2011 at Paradise Point Resort in San Diego, for her being a prominent leader of the Asian community.
  • The “Inaugural Provost Pillar Award in Multicultural and International Competencies” from Alliant International University given at its Convocation Ceremony on August 22, 2011 where she is a Professor of Cross-Cultural Studies at the Shirley M. Hufstedler School of Education and Executive Director of the World Council for Curriculum and Instruction (WCCI).
  • The “100 Most Influential Filipino Women in the United States of America” given at the 8th Filipina Leadership Summit: Filipina Voices: Changing the Face of Power in America, held at the Stanford Court Renaissance in San Francisco, California on October 14, 2011.

Let it be further noted that a commendation to Dr. Matriano was likewise given at the Closing Ceremony of the 25th Anniversary of WCCI Philippine Chapter International Conference at San Juan de Letran College in Manila, Philippines on May 6, 2011 attended by our very own Carole Caparros, CTFLC Treasurer and Board Member is the WCCI Executive Assistant and where CTFLC President Sally Idos and Board Member Ador Idos participated and presented a paper.

For Dr. Matriano, the 2011 accolades were capped with a Citation as one of the “Three Most Influential Filipino Women of San Diego” accorded by the National Federation of Filipino American Association (NaFFAA) during its Dinner Gala at the Town and Country, San Diego California on December 3, 2011.

All of the above four prestigious awards, tributes and citations were bestowed upon Dr. Matriano in recognition of her valuable contribution as an outstanding educator, distinguished professor, remarkable mentor, respected community leader and staunch advocate!

Kudos to Mary Rose, Myrna and Jackie

As we usher in 2012, Kapamilyang CTFLC has again reasons to be proud of and rejoice! And what’s the awe-inspiring news? Capping our 2011 multi-awardee, Dr. Matriano, three other esteemed members are in the limelight for outstanding performance and achievements in their respective school assignments which rightfully gained them honor and recognition:

  • Ms. Mary Rose L. Peralta, Principal of Granger Junior High School, named 2012 Administrator of the Year given by the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA);
  • Ms. Myrna Ablana, Teacher in Filipino at Challenger Middle School was conferred the 2012 Teacher Award; and
  • Ms. Jacquilin U. Magat, Teacher in Filipino at Bell Middle School was the recipient of 2012 Teacher Award.

[Note: For more related information about the awardees, please refer to the item in the CTFLC Blog: `A Glimpse at our 2012 Awardees’]

The four awardees above were honored by CTFLC as jined by family members and friends in a testimonial gathering held at the residence of Ador & Sally Idos on17th of March. During the celebration chaired by Fel Moscoso, Julita Biares did a musical rendition entitled “Once in a While”, Virgie Ferrer extolled each honoree in a poem “Isang Parangal” (available at the CTFLC Blog) which she composed; gifts and flowers were presented; testimonials were given (Sally Idos for Jackie, Lita Candelaria for Myrna, Filda Galvante for Mary Rose, and Carole Caparros for Ate Estela). The awardees’ responses were so soul-stirring and heartwarming that everyone was teary-eyed, as each “expressed sincere appreciation and thanks to the Kapamilyang CTFLC and to everyone for the honors bestowed, love shown, support and assistance extended, and making the celebration possible”.

This occasion was likewise graced by friends from the Global City Innovative College (GCIC) in the Philippines, headed by Dr. Teresita Padrajas, Chair, GCIC School of Education and three student-teachers in Special Education: Joy de Guzman, Hannah Rivera and Early Education: Ellen Ogoy who performed the an interpretative dance to the music of “Salidumay” (a folk song and a lullaby chant among the natives of the mountainous Central Cordillera region of Northern Luzon, specifically the Kalinga tribe). Their visit to the U.S. was through the invitation of the Shriley M. Hufstedler School of Education (HSOE) at Alliant International University in partnership with the World Council for Curriculum and Instruction (WCCI) headed by Dr. Estela C. Matriano, Executive Director and Carole Caparros, Executive Assistant in line with its mission to assist in the formation of global educators all over the world. The student-teachers participated in a Certificate Program in Cross Cultural Studies in K1-12 Classroom: A School Based Observation Program. 

CTFLC was also honored with the presence of Emily ‘Em’ M. Roberts, Yolanda T. David, Marie Stine, and Ched C. Baldonado from the Philippine Institute of Language, Arts & Culture (PILAC) in Los Angeles, whose enthusiasm was not drenched by the heavy rains. Em briefly shared that their plan to put up a Community School is underway where Filipino language and culture, among others, will be taught to address the needs of those in the Los Angeles area.

In spite of the inclement weather, everyone enjoyed the camaraderie and fun, not to mention the sumptuous food, as we thank Ador and Sally for graciously opening their home for this significant affair, as we likewise thank everyone for making this a truly memorable celebration!

A Glimpse at our 2012 Awardees

As we proudly congratulate our 2012 Awardees, we would like to highlight a few more edifying and salient information about them, as shared and written by others.

Mary Rose L. Peralta: 2012 ACSA Administrator of the Year

Two Sweetwater District Principals, Mary Rose Peralta of Granger Junior High and Jose Brosz of Otay Ranch High, have been named 2012 Administrators of the Year by the Association of California School Administrators.

Each year, a handful of educators are honored for outstanding job performance based on their experience, demonstrated leadership and success in promoting student achievement.

"Both Mary Rose Peralta and Jose Brosz are standout school leaders who are making a difference in children's lives every day," said Dr. Edward Brand, Superintendent. "They each have channeled their passion and vision to create dynamic school environments where students are challenged to achieve their potential."

Ms. Peralta became principal at Granger Junior High in 2008 after serving as Coordinator of Academic Support for the district and as Assistant Principal in several Sweetwater schools.

At Granger, she's been credited for driving the school's rising student achievement and earning the school numerous awards. In recognition of narrowing the achievement gap and meeting state and federal academic benchmarks, Granger was named a state and "National Schools to Watch--Taking Center Stage Model Middle School" in 2010 and a Star Honor Roll School by the California Business for Excellence in Education in 2011.

Although Granger serves a high-needs student population (more than one in four students are English language learners and almost 80% qualify for the national free/reduced school lunch program), Ms. Peralta has cemented the vision that every child can succeed. 

Other Highlights

  • In 2009 Granger Junior High was one of several schools whose practices were highlighted in the Superintendent’s Achievement Gap Task Force.  
  • In 2010 Granger was one of only 3 schools in California named Schools To Watch - Taking Center Stage Model School.  It’s one of 250 schools in the nation that is a School to Watch.
  • Granger was named a 2010 California Business for Education Excellence Honor Roll School for making significant progress toward narrowing the achievement gap.
  • Granger is the only Title I Middle School in the District that is not in Program Improvement status. It has met all its AYP and API goals, both school wide and in all significant subgroups in 2010.
  • Its API is 817.  The API of students in the socio-economically disadvantaged subgroup is 808.  The API for students with disabilities increased by 112 points in 2010.
  • Granger was one of two Middle Schools selected to address the Congressional Committee on Achievement in Middle Grades because of our school’s success in narrowing the achievement gap.
  • Granger AVID was selected to present at the National AVID Conferences in Texas in December, 2010 for successfully implementing rigor and AVID strategies school wide.  Granger’s paper will be included in the AVID publication.
  • The National City Police Department believes that Granger’s academic success with students explains, in a very big way, the decrease of gang activity within the immediate community (Lincoln Acres).
  • In 2010-2011, Granger was number ONE in attendance with a rate of 98.24%.
  • The passing rate for Granger students who take the High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) at the high school is upwards of 80%.  More than 60% are proficient in Math and ELA.
  • This 2012, its Principal, Mary Rose Peralta, was named Administrator of the Year in the Middle Grades Principal Category by the Association of California School Administrators: Region 18). - Source: Internet: What Makes Granger Great! - Sweetwater Union High School District & District News, Sweetwater Union High School District.

Jacquilin U. Magat: 2012 Bell Middle School Teacher of the Year

In her testimonial, CTFLC President Sally Idos shared these thoughts about Jackie. “She was my student at Morse High School.  As early as that time, I observed that Jackie had concern and compassion for her classmates and fellow students. She would offer to help her classmates with anything that she could do.

She was an officer of my after-school club, Kaisahan, which did a lot of cultural performances for the school and the community.  One of their big activities is the Filipino Culture Night which required them to be the scriptwriters, actors, and performers.  Jackie was the star dancer of the Tinikling dance.  One of the most relevant roles that she did in these performances was that when the script called for someone who would play the role of a teacher, Jackie would volunteer for that role, which she did very well.  This further convinced me that Jackie would make a powerful teacher. Hence, when the Future Educators Association (FEA) offered scholarships for future teachers, there was no doubt in my mind as to who I would recommend:  Jackie Magat.  And true enough, she was chosen this year as the “Teacher of the Year of Bell Middle School.

Jackie, in her response during the March 17th testimonial gathering, recounts that when she was six months old her aunt adopted her because her biological parents could not afford having another child. She was raised in the Philippines and migrated in the United States at the age of 15. She struggled during her high school years because of her not being fluent in English, thus was made fun of due to her Pinay accent, but this did not deter her but took it as a challenge and work hard to get good grades and joined various clubs and organizations at Morse High School and in her senior year (1998) she was the costume and props manager of Kaisahan (Filipino) Club, and President of English Second Language and Future Educators of America (FEA) Club. The FEA scholarship addressed her financial concern and through the help of the Counseling Services she finished her B.A. in Liberal Studies with specialization in Deaf Education at San Diego State University in 2002.

While taking her multiple subject credentials at Alliant International University she was subbing for San Diego Unified School District, National City School District, and Juvenile Court Schools. Her full time teaching career started on September 2005 at Bell Middle (formerly Bell Junior High) School where she handles Filipino classes to 7-8 graders, and 7th grade Extended Day Math, while at the same serving as Advisor for Future Educators of America Club, the International Club and Junior Kaisahan. After school she continues to tutor past and present students who are struggling in their core classes.

In 2007, she finished her M.Ed. in Curriculum Writing and Instruction Education at Alliant International University making her the first in the family (both mother and father sides) to receive a Master’s degree. She was among the first batch of teachers who took and passed the CSET: in Filipino (Nov. 2006) and eventually received her Filipino Single Subject Credential.

She is currently the Vice-President of Filipino-American Educators Association (FILAMEDA) and active member of CTFLC, organizations that focus on professional growth of Filipino teachers and promotion of Filipino history and culture in the classrooms, and associations like the Foreign Language Council of San Diego (FLCSD) and the Gawad Kalinga USA.

Ms. Kathleen L. Gallagher, Vice-Principal of Bell Middle School, has this to say about Jackie: “She has been one of the most popular and respected teachers at our school. She truly is one of the most dedicated individual I have ever met in terms of inspiring youth to be active and caring members of their community. She is highly committed to the professional community of educators who teach foreign language. And she is a model citizen in terms of giving back to the community and feeling genuine joy in doing so”.

“Ms. Magat instills in her students a solid sense of purpose for, responsibility for, and ownership of learning and community involvement. She genuinely loves her students and has great faith in their potential for greatness. Her students love being in her classes because she inspires them to be the absolute best people they are capable of becoming”.

“Ms. Magat is also highly committed to the Filipino community and to facilitating Filipino language development. It is this authentic commitment to language development that inspires her active involvement in curriculum writing and leadership at the district level where she likewise provides ongoing advisement to other teachers and district staff”.

“Ms. Magat truly embodies Ghandi’s advise to “be the change you want to see in the world”. She is a giving, caring, intelligent human being who consistently models what it means to be a deeply involved and generous person. Her deep commitment to peace and justice is highly contagious and inspiring, whether she is working with students, staff, parents, or community members”.

In closing, Ms. Gallagher emphasizes her “agreement in our staff’s choice of Jacquilin Magat as our “Teacher of the Year”. She has earned the honor year after year and is a perfect candidate to represent our District in the State-wide competition”.

Myrna Ablana: 2012 Challenger Middle School Teacher of the Year

Myrna has been in the teaching profession for 28 years. She was a Science Teacher in the Philippines for 16 years before she came to the United States in 1992. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Education degree (cum laude) from Sacred Heart College, Lucena City, Philippines and earned her M.A. in Instructional and Curricular Studies from the University of Nevada Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nevada. She obtained her teaching credential from National University in San Diego, California. Her own pursuit for excellence had inspired her students and peers to engage in lifelong learning.

She is currently an English and Filipino teacher at Challenger Middle School where she was recognized as “Staff Member of the Month: February 2011” and recently as recipient of the “2012 Teacher of the Year Award”. She is the Diversity Club Coordinator and a Master Teacher. She has participated in various comprehensive professional development trainings such as the WestEd’s Quality Teaching for English Learners (QTEL), Integrated 21st Century (i21) Interactive Classroom, and the Southern Area International Languages Network (SAILN) Tier I and Tier II for world languages teachers. She is an active member of the Council for Teaching Filipino Language and Culture (CTFLC).

Ms. Sheelagh Moran, Principal of Challenger Middle School writes: “I have known Myrna professionally for the past 12 years. Mrs. Ablana has served as an English teacher at Challenger Middle School since 2000; teaches the Filipino world language class which is extremely popular mainly due to her emphasis of teaching the Filipino culture. Most recently, she coordinated a drive to support survivors of the typhoon that devastated the Philippines. She is amazing! She serves as the Diversity Club Coordinator and works very closely with the Union Pan of Asian Communities (UPAC) liaison to support students and families in the Mira Mesa community; also serves as a master teacher, preparing future teachers in the area of English; has participated in the Quality Teaching for English Learners (QTEL) training and in i21 Promethean technology training. She has embraced the collaborative initiative in which she regularly plans with colleagues, and she has taken a leadership role in the formation of professional learning communities (PLC’s) at Challenger”.

“In the classroom, Mrs. Ablana works to actively engage students; she establishes relevance by setting the purpose and connects new learning to students’ prior knowledge; and designs lessons incorporating state standards and district literacy frameworks to ensure all students’ needs are met”.

“Mrs. Ablana participates in staff development which focuses on collaboration with colleagues to determine grade level proficiency and has designed and incorporated lessons in which students are supported to meet or exceed standards. She leads daily lessons and uses flexible groups which allow for small group and individualized instruction. All materials are available to students; environmental supports are posted purposely and are visible/accessible to support student independence. She continually assesses students using work samples, observations, record reviews and formal/informal assessments to guide instruction and ensure that students are progressing towards standards. She has built a classroom environment based on respect, creating a risk free environment in which students are eager to share their thinking. Mrs. Ablana is a visible member of the Challenger staff”.

“Mrs. Ablana leads by example and eagerly takes on new learning. She takes risks in her teaching and is open to suggestions related to improving her practice. Her humble demeanor creates approachability by all – students, parents, and teachers. Her reflective practice encourages a learning environment in which student achievement data indicates acceleration and success for all students. She generates enthusiasm and creates a following among her peers. She makes fun and gives countless hours to the betterment of each of her students”.

Summing up, Ms. Moran’s says: “Mrs. Ablana was recognized by the staff as Staff Member of the month in February 2010. Mrs. Ablana is a trustworthy, honest colleague who absolutely embodies the “Teacher of the Year”.