Continued from this post …
I was happy talking to AB. She impressed me as intelligent and someone who knows her work well. When I asked how we could help, she summarized their problem in a few sentences. She said the ALS – the Adult Learning System – had people from the education department visiting the village regularly to prepare the students for the government exams in October. But since there were other barangays to attend to, they no longer come three times a week but only once a week. This has discouraged many of the students so now, there are only 15 students left. That broke my heart.
AB said the government people teach “conversational English” but she felt this wasn’t effectively working. She believes the students would need “basic English” and “basic Math” instead. RN and I looked at each other. I guess we were both thinking of the same thing: English for me, Math for him but can we both do this without any help from other people? Many other things were on my mind as I listened to AB: do I have enough time to come here regularly – at least twice a week for 1-2 hours per visit – considering that I will also be teaching in the coming semester and RN would be away reviewing in Manila for the CPA licensure exams in October? What materials would I need? What are the things that I must do to prepare myself for this? No, thank God, I wasn’t thinking about the heat and the dust. RN and I had already made up our minds to help them. We’re going to do this and “not count the cost” (St. Ignatius’ prayer).
There was an urgent need for more tutors, AB summed everything up. Okay, we assured her, we’ll try to see what we can do. We’ll come back next week and talk to you again. She was profuse in her thanks (later she sent me an SMS that said “it was nice of you to come and thank you for your initiative to help”.) RN and I were happy … and very excited.
Teach for Tomorrow had just taken its first baby step. 😀