Folks who have been following this blog for some time would probably be aware that education is a MAJOR concern for Marketman, Mrs. Marketman & Family. One might argue I am even more passionate about education than I am about food. :) At the base of every issue I have probably written about, an important element of “education” or a lack thereof (whether formal, informal or experiential) is probably at the crux of the matter, whether it be an appreciation of a common fruit, indignation over plagiarism, a service situation gone bad, or a classic Filipino recipe. Ultimately, I don’t believe we can progress as a nation unless we consciously strive to educate our children, and hopefully our future leaders, in a more enlightened and intelligent manner. I am thus taking this opportunity to reach the target audience of this blog to get the word out about a SPECTACULAR SCHOLARSHIP OPPORTUNITY for the right student(s). Please read on if you know of someone who might be deserving of a partial or FULL ride high school scholarship currently available at The Beacon Academy.
But first, some background to provide the proper context. Over a decade ago, when the Teen was just a toddler, we looked at several elementary schools in Manila and were unable to find one that seemed to fit the bill. To make a VERY long story shorter, we ended up with a group of like-minded young friends/parents, and with a lot of chutzpah and a heavy dose of idealism, set up what is now known as The Beacon School, a private, international, non-denominational, non-profit elementary school (Kinder through Grade 8) located in Taguig, Metro Manila. The vision was to create nothing short of a top quality educational institution, with a strong Filipino/local ethos but with a world-class curriculum. The Beacon School is now in it’s tenth year of operation, and I think it has achieved many of the objectives we had envisioned. But it is relatively young, and we strive to keep making it better. Some of you may bristle that it is simply an elitist school, but I would counter that a good education requires serious resources. The Beacon School’s facilities are comfortable, the teacher to student ratios at roughly 1:8 are amongst the lowest in the country, the faculty have superb credentials and are compensated very well. And most importantly, the kids seem to be thriving and all indications suggest a very nurturing, positive yet rigorous educational experience. It was not an easy challenge for all of the founding trustees to take on. But looking back on the experience, it was certainly one of the most intellectually and emotionally rewarding things Mrs. MM and I have been a part of. The Beacon School now has over 300 students and it nears full capacity with extensive waitlists in the younger grade levels. We never wanted to grow too big, but definitely wanted to be known for the high quality of our education. And the grade school also offers scholarships to deserving students unable to pay the tuition fees, though that is another topic altogether and on a different application schedule. Now that we have graduated several classes of middle schoolers (8th graders) and they have gone onto various high school programs in either local and international schools, the clamor for a Beacon High School has grown louder and louder.
In response to that clamor, and a desire to continue what we had started with the grade school, we set up The Beacon Academy in 2009, a separate four-year high school with a full International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum. In July 2010, we shall be moving into our new campus in Binan, Laguna, some 5-10 minutes east of The Brent International School in Mamplasan. Situated on 8+ hectares of rolling land, we shall be inaugurating our first building of roughly 2,000 square meters and an enormous gym. We hope that over the next ten years, we will continue to build up the campus and at its peak it will have the capacity for 500-600 students from 9th to 12th grade. While modeled after several of the finest preparatory schools in the West, we are proud that it is also very much a Filipino endeavor, for Filipino and foreign students with a long term interest in the country. All of this was done with parent funding, and generous gifts/capital from like-minded folks who believe in the vision of a top-quality school providing an education that will prepare our children for the complex challenges ahead. And it is also, like the grade school, a completely non-profit endeavor. It is a daunting undertaking, with lofty goals, but it is a GOOD THING.
The Beacon Academy is currently seeking to award extremely generous scholarship(s) for a deserving student(s) with impressive academic credentials who would otherwise be unable to afford the full tuition and fees of the school. This is a GREAT opportunity and I strongly encourage any of you with children who are of the right age/level to start 9th grade (first year high school) to check out the links below for details about the scholarship(s). Deadline for submission is 31 March 2010, but you can download most of the application forms from the website of the school to speed things along.
Please help spread the word about the school and the scholarship opportunities. Thank you very much.