Friday, October 19, 2007

A Professional Theater Arts Seminar-Workshop for the Kids

Ten students from elementary and high school, with Ms. Maryrose Amador, attended a one-day theater seminar-workshop last Sept. 27, 2007 at Balay Negrense Museum, Silay City. It was organized by the Cultural Center of the Philippines Outreach & Exchange Division thru its resident theater company, Sining Kambayoka Ensemble.

SFAS kids support a Negrense film

SFAS kids watch Ligaw Liham movie

The high school students watched "Ligaw Liham", an independent film written and directed by Jay Abello and shot entirely in Negros (with scenes in school and some students performed in the movie), last Sept. 27 at Robinson's Movieoworld, Bacolod City.

SFAS kids pay it forward ...

Last Sept. 21, 2007, the 1st and 2nd year students spent their morning with the children of Balaring Elementary School in Silay City. They played with them, danced with them, and shared some snacks and old clothes. As our kids get help from donors all over the world, it is but fitting that they, too, give something of themselves to others, if not in money but in time, talent and other resources ...

SFAS joins 1st NOPSSCEA Week

SFAS joined the 1st NOPSSCEA (Neg. Occ. Private Schools Sports Cultural Educational Association) Week last Sept. 23 - 28, 2007. We joined the following cultural events: Filipino Declamation and Vocal Solo in both levels. In sports, we joined badminton boys (GS) and boys/girls (HS), table tennis boys and girls (GS/HS), and volleyball girls (GS). We were 1st runner up in table tennis boys and girls (HS) and volleyball. We were champions in table tennis boys and girls (GS).

Thursday, October 11, 2007

The Pride of SFAS

Aubrey Sobrepena (1st year) and Danica Mae Dimanalata (3rd year) are members of the Kabataang Silay Ensemble Rondalla. The group presently has 26 student-members from different schools in Silay, including SFAS. Danica shares that they have daily practices when they have a performance or a content to join. She says “Even if we are tired, the music that we are playing makes us alive and we don’t stop until we perfect our pieces.”

The KSE Rondalla has performed in different schools like St. John Institute and Silay Institute, in different cities during their fiestas, and in the Cultural Center of the Philippines (Manila). Just last month, they joined a competition in Cebu City. Of the 4 rondalla groups who competed, their group and Bohol’s group won. They are now preparing for another competition to be held in CCP (Manila) in November 2007.

Celebrating the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi and the Birthday of our Foundress

SFAS celebrated last Oct. 4, 2007 the feast day of St. Francis of Assisi and the birthday of our foundress, Mrs. Marietta Ledesma. We started with a mass then different games for the students, e.g. who among the preschoolers can say "St. Francis of Assisi" holding his/her breath the longest, forming the puzzle of the saint (as shown in the 2nd photo). The 2nd graders won the best chorale presentation of the Prayer of St. Francis with one of their classmates dressed up as the saint interpreting the poem thru movement. Since St. Francis was a lover of animals, a contest on the student who could best mimic animals sounds was held also, e.g. pig, horse, monkey, bird. A special treat came our way as well as one of the owners of the school, Mrs. Margie Ledesma-Abello, donated a whole pig. Mothers came to barbecue the pork and serve to all the students for lunch.

Search-In Circle 2

Praise God! Another successful Search-In retreat was held last Oct. 5 - 7, 2007 in SFAS. Nineteen 3rd year students with Sir Matthew Ledesma formed the Circle 2. Many thanks to the following who helped in the retreat: Ms. Mic (Circle 1, SSA); Sir JR (Circle 49, La Salle-Bacolod); Ms. Lina, Irish, Janel, Kristel, Lovelyn, Juan C, Jaybie, Maher and Marmar (Circle 1, SFAS) ; and Francis (94), Paul (95), Ron (95) and Ikito (98) of La Salle Bacolod.

Friday, September 28, 2007

A Trip to a Bakery Shop

The Homemakers' Club of SFAS went on a field trip last Sept. 11, 2007 to Bong Bong's bakery shop in Bacolod City. Bong Bong's is known for making different Bacolod snacks for "pasalubongs" (for tourists or balikbayans), e.g. piyaya, pinasugbo, etc.

Preschool Kids Learn How to Take Care of their Hair

The SFAS Preschool students went on a field trip last Sept. 12, 2007 to a beauty parlor in Bacolod City. They were taught on how to take good care of their hair and a couple of students got an actual hair-cut. This was part of their lesson in personal hygiene in their Religion class.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Our Very First Teacher Who Studied in SFAS, Too!

It was in the year 1987 when I first enrolled at SFAS as Prep. My teacher was Ms. CaƱal. She was an effective teacher and was very kind. I also found my classmates very friendly. Since then, I liked and enjoyed schooling until I graduated in Grade 6. Ms. Elena, my grade 3 adviser and Ms. Melit, my grade 6 adviser, are still of dedicated service to the school. I finished my college degree at Colegio San Agustin- Bacolod as a working scholar. There I took Bachelor in Secondary Education.

Right now, two of my siblings are studying here in SFAS, my younger sister in Prep and my younger brother in Grade 6. Even if we were poor, I persevered to study. My mother took care of us and my father was a company driver. This has been my fourth year of teaching in SFAS. At first, I was a substitute teacher until the school hired me as a regular teacher. This year, I am the Grade 5 adviser and am teaching Language 4 and 5, Reading 4 and 5 and PE 4 -10. Teaching the kids is enjoyable though its tiresome often times but its compensated when I see my kids learning, eager to learn, and show positive attitude towards education.

Sir Armando Gayatenia, Jr.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

YES . . . It’s really worth it! 35 Years in Retrospect

Watching the SFAS’ “After 40 Years” video, I felt so emotional. It was a sentimental journey back in history . . . having started my elementary education with SFAS in 1972 and completed it in 1978. I was my Class valedictorian then.

I would like to highlight very familiar faces in that video . . . foremost, the late Inday Maret (Ledesma), Ms. Teresita Mallorca (our Grade II Teacher) and Mr. James Ledesma who vividly narrated “the making of SFAS”. Admittedly, transforming SFAS into an ever fortified institution in the service of farmer’s sons and daughters was a noble mission by the Ledesma’s. Hence, I give tribute to them, SFAS, my Teachers, Classmates and old Friends who became part of my entire person of today.

I grew up in Hda. Lonoy and spent my first 20 years in that farm. Born to ordinary farm workers, I dreamed that one day, I enjoy the simple comforts in life. Finishing my elementary education – 100% free at that - was my top priority. I made it! That paved the way for me to pursue further on – finishing highschool and college with the highest honors until I made it to the employment world. That dream became a reality!

I am a product of the Ledesma’s and SFAS’ investments on me. Every penny of that investment resulted in a good yield.

For now, I can only try to emulate the value that SFAS and its patron Saint, St. Francis of Assisi had instilled in me. I always strive that the Lord continue to mold me as an instrument of His peace. For me, that peace can be realized through the emancipation-out-of-poverty-cycle process in which finishing (quality) education is the key.

I am currently working with The Boeing Company based in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as an Executive Office Administrator. This November, I will pursue my MBA course with the Open University United Kingdom.

“Madamo gid nga salamat!”

A note to SFAS Students: “Poverty should not be a hindrance for success. It’s an inspiration!

- Rene Sellado, Class of 1978

LASSO visit

Last Sept. 4, 2007, Sr. Joy Luz and Dr. Herminia Torres of De La Salle Philippines visited our school, a supervised school of USLS. Shown in photo (from left to right): Ms. Doris Dumaran, high school level Vice Principal of USLS Bacolod and La Salle Supervisor to St. Benilde School; Ms. Tina Navarro - La Salle Supervisor to St. Francis of Assisi School; Dr. Herminia Torres; Sr. Joy Luz and Mr. John Cabalo, LASSO coordinator of Visayas.

A Learning Experience

I learned a lot from the two seminars I attended on Physics and Safety Measures in the Laboratory. The speakers were very good because they explained the topics very well. I also met and became friends with teachers in other schools. We shared ideas about our subjects and the school where we work. I am happy and thankful that I was chosen by the school to attend the seminars.

Mrs. Edna Taganile
High School Science teacher

Note: Ms. Edna graduated from SFAS in 1993. This is her first year to teach in SFAS, but she has been teaching for 6 years already.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Faculty and Staff Development Program SY2007-2008 First Quarter

  • April 9 - 12, 2007

Mr. Ariel and Mrs. Lina Gabino attended a FAPE in-service training for 3rd year High School Science and English at Punta Villa Resort, Iloilo City.

  • April 10 - 19, 2007

Our preschool teachers, Mrs. Maricel Navigar and Ms. Karen Omero, attended an 8-day training course on Early Childhood Education at CHMSC, Talisay City.

  • April 15 - 17, 2007

Mrs. Emilie Sales Diaz attended PRISSAAP's 2007 Guidance Counselor Training Workshop in Bacolod City.

  • April 22- 24, 2007

Sir Armando Gayatenia, Jr. attended PRISSAAP's seminar-workshop on Reshaping the MAPEH Teachers for the School of the Future at Mambucal Resort, Murcia, Negros Occ.

  • June 1 - 3, 2007

Mrs. Sheila Buenconsejo attended the FAPE in-service training for 2nd year High School Filipino at Bacolod City.

  • June 6 - 8, 2007
Mrs. Janice Caspe and Mrs. Maryrose Amador attended the USLS seminar on Instructional Improvement in Bacolod City.

  • June 8 - 10, 2007
Sir JR Abello attended the FAPE in-service training for 2nd year High School Math at Bacolod City.

  • June 22 - 23, 2007
Mrs. May Santillan attended the PRISSAAP Librarians' Congress in Iloilo City.

  • July 13, 2007
All teachers attended the seminar on the Life and Works of St. John Baptist De La Salle in Silay City.

  • July 20 - 21, 2007
Mrs. Carmela Golez attended the Workshop on Instructional Leadership for Lasallian Basic Education Coordinators in Bacolod City.

  • July 27, 2007
Sir Ariel Gabino, together with two students, Trina Parreno (3rd year) and Henry Navarette (2nd year) attended the NOPSSCEA Dance Sports workshop-seminar in Bacolod City.

  • August 1, 2007
Preschool teachers Mrs. Maricel Navigar and Ms. Karen Omero and Mrs. Maryrose Amador attended the NOPSSCEA's seminar on Accomplished Teaching Across the Domains of Learning in Bacolod City.

  • August 10, 2007
All teachers attended the seminar given by the University of St. La Salle-Bacolod City on
Formative Teaching in Silay City. Speakers were Ms. Jo Tero and Ms. Tina Navarro.

Lutong Pinoy

One of the highlights of the Buwan ng Wika celebration was the Lutong Pinoy contest. The parents of each grade level from Kinder to 4th year high school was assigned a Filipino dish to prepare: Chicken inasal (Kinder), Escabeche (Prep), Tinolang Manok (1), Pangat (2), Adobo (3), Bicol Express (4), Sinigang (5), Pinakbet (6), Batchoy (1st), Kare-kare (2nd), Mongo (3rd) and Dinuguan (4th).
Criteria was 75% pallatability, 15% presentation and 10% team work. Our judges were Hacienda Lonoy owner Mrs. Sally Ledesma, retired SFAS teacher Ms. Tess Mallorca and owner of a known catering business in Bacolod Mrs. Michelle Gerona. The dishes that won 1st prize were the chicken inasal and sinigang. As winners, the Kinder and Grade 5 classes get a free day.

Buwan ng Wika Culmination Festivities

The school ended the Buwan ng Wika (the month of celebrating our national language) with many activities from Aug. 29 to 31, 2007. A variety of contests were held like: bulletin board display, vocal solo singing of original Pilipino music (OPM), Filipino declamation, chorale tula (poem), folk dance, pop dance to the tune of OPM, lutong Pinoy, and parlor games (e.g., planting rice, crab race, sack rack, tug-o-war, bunot (coconut husk) race, and tomato relay).
Students, teachers, staff and even parents dressed up in Filipiniana attire on all Fridays of the month of August.
The theme for the month was "Maraming Wika, Matatag na Bansa" (Many Dialects, Strong Nation).

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Like my sponsor, I want to help others achieve their goals ...

I am Elthon Buensuceso. My friends call me "Ton." I am now in Grade 9 (3rd year high school) at SFAS. I was born on Nov. 19, 1992 and am now 15 years old.
My parents are Antonio and Elena Buensuceso. My father works as one of the field managers (“kabo) in Hacienda Tinihaban while my mother works in the farm office as cashier. I have one brother who studies in SFAS also. His name is Marc Dence. I am the youngest.
During my free time, I like to play basketball and listen to music. My favorite subject is CLE (Religion) because I like to know how God loves me.
I dream of becoming a nurse someday because I want to help my family and other people. And like my sponsor who is now helping me achieve my goal, I’d like to help others one day to achieve their goals, too.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Faculty and Staff Development Program SY2007-2008 Second Quarter

  • August 23 – 25, 2007

Ms. Edna Taganile (Science teacher) will attend a seminar-workshop organized by the Department of Education Regional Office on High School Physics in Iloilo City.

  • August 24, 2007

Ms. May Santillan (Librarian) and Ms. Anabelle Ortega (Library Assistant) will attend a seminar-workshop organized by the NOPSSCEA (Negros Occidental Private Schools Sports Cultural Educational Association, Inc.) on “Classification and Cataloging Made Simple” in Bacolod City.

Ms. Emily Sales Diaz (Guidance counselor) will attend a seminar organized by he NOPSSCEA on “Healing through the Developmental Stages” in Bacolod City.

  • August 30, 2007

Ms. Edna Taganile (Science teacher) will attend a seminar organized by the Department of Education Regional Office on “Orientation on Safety Measures in Science Laboratory” in Iloilo City.

  • September 7, 2007

Mrs. Haydee Casiple, Mrs. Janice Caspe and Sir Matthew Ledesma will attend the seminar organized by NOPSSCEA on Instructional Learning Competencies in Bacolod City. Resource speaker is Dr. Allan de Guzman.

  • September 7 – 8, 2007

Ms. May Santillan (Librarian) will attend a seminar-workshop organized by the PRISSAAP (Private Secondary Schools Administrators Association of the Philippines) on library work in Bacolod City.

  • September 11, 2007

Mrs. Sheila Buenconsejo and Sir Armando Gayatenia, Jr. will attend a seminar-workshop on Cheer Dance Techniques organized by the PE Department of the Univ. of St. La Salle-Bacolod City.

Monday, August 20, 2007

A Filipino in New York Supports our Cause

Ms. Golez,
Hi. I found out about you thru an article in a Philippine newspaper and was really impressed on your organization’s projects. I have always believed education is the key in improving a person's life. Not only it gives them the tools in building their future but strengthens one's character and self respect.

I am a Manileno but studied college in Bacolod (La Salle) and worked a few years with the now closed Manila bank before migrating here in New York. However, Negros have always been close to my heart and come home to Bacolod now and then just to visit. I was there last Feb 2007 and was amazed how it changed. I will be coming back in October this year and I can bring used (but in excellent condition) children's books, cd's , toys etc and maybe other stuffs that your organization or school needs. Any other donations (in terms of goods or money) can be arranged when I get there. Any little thing could help. It can be picked up or delivered to you. Keep up the good work, They will need all the help they can get and I hope I can contribute even in a small way in changing their lives. Please feel free to e-mail me if they will need something else and maybe I can arrange for something. Best regards to your family and more power.

It's amazing how God's Spirit is moving ... in people I don't know, in places thousands of miles away from where I am, and in different ways I could not have thought of. If only we allow ourselves to be empowered and used by the Spirit, imagine how much goodness can reign in our world today!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

I dream of becoming an Accountant someday!

A pleasant day to you! I am Julie Ann L. Estardo. My friends call me Jul. I am now a Grade 9 student at St. Francis of Assisi School of Silay City. I was born on August 7, 1992. I am now 14 years old.

My father is Danilo J. Estardo and my mother is Luzviminda L. Estardo. I have 1 brother and 3 sisters. They are Jerome, Jessica, Joice Ann, and Jelaine. I am the second among my siblings.

During my free time, I like to go along with my friends. My favorite subject in school is Mathematics because I can do well in this subject and I learn faster.

I dream of becoming an accountant because as what I have mentioned I'm good in numbers and besides, this course is what I really want to study when I will be in college.

Thank you for your time in reading this. I hope you were able to know me a little better through it. Thank you also for sending me to school. Because of you, I am now closer to my dream of becoming an accountant someday. God bless you.


Julie Ann L. Estardo

Young Explorers' Club Field Trip

The Young Explorers' Club visited the grade school and high school Science laboratories of the University of St. La Salle last August 15, 2007.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Kawanggawang Tapulanga, Handog ng Pamilya Ledesma!

A friend of mine texted me the other night. She said that she was helping her Grade 3 daughter study in her Social Studies subject. They had to read their Current Events Digest. To her surprise, I was in the front page!

I borrowed her copy and scanned it. Check it out! It’s so cool! --- Kawanggawang Tapulanga, Handog ng Pamilya Ledesma!

Current Events Digest is a Dept. of Education approved supplementary material for Social Studies in elementary.

A busy week in school!

The week isn’t over yet but so much has happened in school already. We just finished our First Quarter Examinations (Monday and Tuesday). Yesterday, thanks to the help of our USLS Supervisor, Ms. Tina Navarro, who facilitated these 2 activities, the members of the Young Explorers’ Club and the Book Lovers Club went on a field trip to La Salle’s grade school and high school Science laboratories and student libraries, respectively.

I spoke with the moderator of the Young Explorers’ Club today and she shared that the students enjoyed a lot and learned some interesting things that we can follow in school. For example, they learned that flowers can be preserved! This will be their next project!

In the same afternoon, the Campus Ministry members visited the elderly of Hda. Tinihaban. They entertained the “lolos” and “lolas”, shared some snacks with them and got to know them.

Today, the 2nd year students together with their adviser, Ms. Edna Taganile, attended a recollection for the day at the CICM Retreat Center in Talisay City.

SFAS artists made it to the top 20!

SFAS was represented by 3 students (Ydsan Dongon Grade 6, Raquel Medina 3rd year, and Juan Cesar Lim 4th year) in the SM City Bacolod Poster-Making contest last August 11, 2007 as part of their celebration of Buwan ng Wika. The theme was “Maraming Wika, Matatag na Bansa.” Of the 110 participants, Ydsan and Raquel made it to the top 20! Incidentally, Ydsan’s and Raquel’s groups won 1st prize in the school’s own on-the-spot poster-making contest held last Aug. 1, 2007.

We’re so proud of all of you!

Search-In Circle 1 in SFAS

Search-In Retreat is coming to SFAS. The first circle of 20 4th year students will be held on August 24 - 26, 2007 in the campus. USLS 4th year and college students will be helping out. For those who wish to write a palanca, feel free to email me at

FYI, I am circle 1 of St. Scholastica's Academy in 1984 while my brother JR is circle 49 of La Salle Bacolod in 1996. Other classmates of JR in high school who are Search-inners as well will be visiting and helping out. My batchmate who is Circle 2, Dean Ervie Gallespen, will be giving a talk.

Please include the success of the Search-In in your prayers. And we're open for donations as well to cover for the meals of the facilitators and other expenses of the retreat.

Teacher Awards for the 1st Quarter SY07-08

We started it this school year ... as administrator, I chose to give Teacher/s for the Quarter award based on the teacher's performance as a subject teacher and as a homeroom adviser. Three teachers deserved the award: Ms. Elena Coja, Grade 1 adviser and Filipino/Social Studies 1 - 3 teacher; Sir Ariel Gabino, Grade 6 adviser and Social Studies/Math/Science teacher in grade school and high school teacher; and Sir JR Abello, 3rd year adviser and Science/Math/Economics and Music & Arts teacher in grade school and high school. As winners, they will be awarded Php500 gift certificates from Robinson's.

The teachers also nominated among themselves the following "special" awards and the winners for these awards for the first quarter are: Ms. Congeniality and English Proficiency - Lina Gabino, Most Outstanding Homeroom Adviser, Well-Groomed and Most Industrious - Ariel Gabino, Most Outstanding Subject Teacher - JR Abello, Most Improved - Haydee Casiple and Armando Gayatenia, Jr., and Most Cooperative - Emily Sales Diaz. The awardees were given certificates of recognition!

Congratulations and keep up the good work!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Painting with Watercolor!

Last Tuesday, July 24, another classmate of mine from High School, Jackie Lou Velasco, visited the school and gave a lecture/demo on Watercolor Painting. Along with her 2 brothers, Jason and Julian, and her brother Julian's girlfriend, Sheila, they taught the 2nd and 3rd year High School students the basics of watercolor painting.

In the 1st picture is one of my 3rd year students, Trina, trying out watercolor painting. In the 2nd picture is Jackie Lou and in the 3rd picture is Sheila. All 4 guests are already licensed architects!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Former HS classmate visits SFAS

Former High School classmate Bien Nillos, M.D. visited the school last Tuesday morning, June 19, to demonstrate the use of the stethoscope and sphygmomanometer to my grade 6 Science class, as part of our lesson on the circulatory system.

He also talked about the reproductive system to my grade 5 Science class later that morning.

Bien Nillos was our class salutatorian and is now reviewing for the medical board exams, which he will take this August.

Monday, June 11, 2007

school year 2007-08, here we go

The new school year started last Wednesday, June 6! I started my first day as 3rd year High School homeroom adviser!

First two days were mainly orientation...campus tour, going over the student handbook, rules, and other important matters the students needed to know.

I missed Friday because I was sent to a teachers' seminar (Friday to Sunday)...

Friday, June 1, 2007

baby shower

Last May 31, the SFAS faculty held a baby shower for fellow teacher, Ms. Leda Ibugan, who is due this June. She is having a baby girl.

The teachers also celebrated the birthday of fellow teacher, Ms. Mae Santillan. It was also the last outing for the teachers as they are now preparing for the new school year, which opens this June 6!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


Welcome to the SFAS blog! We hope to share stories from the St. Francis of Assisi of Silay City community to the world!