by Zarrel Gel M. Noza
On October 4, the Department of Education – Division of Laguna (DepEd – Laguna) held the World Teachers’ Day celebration at the Laguna Provincial Capitol grounds in Sta. Cruz, Laguna. The theme of this year’s celebration was “My Teacher, My Hero, Guro ng Laguna, Lingkod Bayani”.
DepEd personnel from the 23 districts of Laguna participated in the said event. It was divided into five parts. There was a torch parade “Lakad Tungo sa Liwanag”, which started at 4 o’clock in the morning from the Provincial Capitol to Sta. Cruz Town Plaza, and then back to the capitol grounds. The participants also performed a mass calisthenics in front of the DepEd building.
The opening ceremonies was hosted by Dr. Wilmer Gahite, District Supervisor of Pagsanjan. During the opening program, a teacher from San Pedro District sang Whitney Houston’s The Greatest Love of All and Sharon Cuneta’s Bituing Walang Ningning. A pair of teachers from the Nagcarlan District also performed a folk dance.
The participants also played several games such as palo sebo, kadang-kadang, tiyakad, and other “Laro ng Lahi”.
Each district also had the opportunity to showcase the well-known products of their towns. For instance, Los Baños district displayed and sold one of their famous delicacies, buko pie. The district of Paete had wooden carvings and paper mache in their booth. In the booth of Liliw District, different styles of “tsinelas” were exhibited. Teacher organizations based on their subject matter also had their own booths in the trade fair.
School heads and some teachers from each district presented a demonstration of several Philippine Folk Dances.
There was also a raffle draw wherein some DepEd personnel won different prizes such as refrigerators, mobile phones, electric fans, television sets, and washing machines.
The purpose of the said celebration is to present and recognize the teachers of the division. It also aims to showcase the developments of DepEd-Laguna, based on some development indicators, and to educate the people about their advocacies.
According to Mrs. Angelita Suerte, school head from the Liliw District, the said celebration is a good way to recognize the teachers that should be considered as ‘modern-day heroes’. It also served as a “stress-free” day for them because they were able to experience even just a bit of relaxation and happiness. As she said, teachers really need to be recognized for other professions will not be there if not because of the teacher. But sadly, many people are already forgetting it.
Also, Mrs. Elsa Pleto, school head of Daniw Elementary School, said that the celebration was indeed the best venue to appreciate and recognize teachers, who are the mother of all professions. According to her, people should reme,ber that teachers sacrifice almost everything, even their time for their own selves and their families, for the sake of their profession. She also said that she felt good celebrating the World Teachers’ Day with her fellow educators.
However, according to Eddelyn Calaylay, a Bachelor of Secondary Education student from Laguna State Polytechnic University, awards are just material things. The best way we can do for our teachers, not only during the world Teachers’ Day, but also every day, is to respect as they deserve. As she said, respect and appreciation are the best gifts we can ever give them. “Mas mahalaga pa din ang pagkilalang hindi nasusukat ng mga material na bagay,” Calaylay added.
Moreover, a fourth year high school student named Marie Joseph Guevarra said that giving back all their efforts and sacrifices is the best way to celebrate the World Teachers’ Day. For example, preparing even small surprises for them will already make them feel special.