APC welcomed former Secretary of Education Dr. Edilberto de Jesus to Bendum last weekend. Dr. De Jesus was in office when APC received recognition by DepED, through a permit to operate a primary school for Indigenous Peoples in Department Order No. 42, s. 2004.
This year, there were 11 graduates from APC who received their certificates and a heart-felt congratulations from Dr. de Jesus, Datu Nestor Menaling, the tribal leader of Bendum, and Pedro Walpole, APC Executive Director.
As part of his speech given to students, staff, and parents at the graduation, Dr. de Jesus shared the honor he felt in taking part in such a meaningful occasion, giving his congratulations to the teachers and parents who “strove to ensure that their children obtained this opportunity to study at APC.”
Sharing his own experiences of successes and failures, Dr. de Jesus spoke about his efforts to achieve a longer period of basic education. He praised the implementation of the K-12 basic education program, and the two years of senior high school where students have the chance to enhance their employment capacity through technical courses. This and other non-formal learning opportunities, Dr. de Jesus said, are part of a “life-long learning,” which means that as long as we live, our learning and our education continues.
Citing APC as one of the successes which he can be most happy about, Dr. de Jesus’ closing remarks were that “what is important is that we continue to provide opportunities for our youth and our children, to realize their potential and their capacity so that the youth further become a blessing for their families, their culture, and their country.”