Makati City, the Philippines, 25 June 2021 -- The Salesian education leaders in the Basic Education Departments (BED) in the schools of the SDB-FIN Province gathered in the Joy Center of Don Bosco Technical Institute Makati for a whole day of learning, direction setting, and updating last June 21, 2021. Notwithstanding the COVID-19 pandemic, they braved the fear and uncertainty brought by the pandemic and met face-to-face for the first time since March 2020 to share and learn from each other how the basic education landscape was changed by the pandemic and how the Don Bosco schools creatively adjusted to these changes and are continually challenged to adapt to these challenges.
Salesian schools represented were Don Bosco Technical Institute Tarlac, Don Bosco Academy Mabalacat, Don Bosco Academy Bacolor, Don Bosco Technical College Mandaluyong, Don Bosco College Canlubang, and the hosts, Don Bosco Technical Institute Makati.
Fr. Gerry Martin, SDB, Provincial of the SDB-FIN Province was present and gave the opening conference on the learnings of the BEDs gained from the pandemic in parallel to the message of the Rector Major to the Salesians in the General Chapter 28. Fr. Joebeth Vivo, SDB, head of the Commission on Youth Ministry presented the strategic directions for the BED from SYNODO 1, 2, and 3 and the Congress on Youth 2019. Salesian education is Popular, Rooted in Christ, Integral and Synodal, Missionary and Empowering (PRIME).
In the afternoon, Bro. Carmelo Martinez presented the DEB Strategic Directions for the coming 3 school years stemming from the directions set by the congregation and the province and by the reflections of the experiences of last year. He presented as well processes and tools for monitoring these strategic directions. Fr. Renato de Guzman then presented the paradigm shift for Christian Living for the New Normal (CLiNN) as experienced and applied by the different Salesian schools. From these learnings, he then presented directions for the Pastoral Department for the next school year. Lastly, Dr. Darwin Buensuseso and Bro. Melo presented the proposed Teachers’ Performance Evaluation Tool and Salesianity Assessment Tool.
The COVID-19 Pandemic has brought a lot of changes to the way we educate and evangelize the Bosconians in our respective schools. And yet, the same passion for saving souls remains and the motivation to educate our Bosconians by evangelizing and to evangelize them by educating.