Paragons of Educational Innovation

By Raymund Magno GarlitosOctober 22, 2017

It may take a village to raise the child, but it takes more than a mission and a vision to introduce changes in the educational system.  This is the rationale behind the Excellence in Educational Transformation Awards (EETA), which rewards the most transformative and innovative educational programs of educational institutions and their proponents.

Started by the Bayan Academy in partnership with REX Bookstore, Knowledge Channel, ABS-CBN Lingkod Kapamilya and the Department of Education (DepEd), EETA recognizes the impact and legacy of institutions and educators that promote learning effectiveness and school efficiency while being true to their vision, mission and values. Celebrating the triumphs of the “smallest” schools that delivered simple yet impactful innovations that uplifted students’ learning and competitiveness, as well as ignited collaborations among stakeholders, four schools and two schools divisions were awarded the highly esteemed accolades in the various categories.  

Now on its fifth year, EETA honored this year’s batch of awardees that included Create and Learning Paths School and Diliman Preparatory School as the Most Transformative School for Learning Effectiveness and School Efficiency; along with them are Lawit Elementary School (Innovations in Access to Education and Learning Methodology for Learning Effectiveness); Department of Education–Schools Division of Carcar (Innovations in Quality Education: Learning Materials and Learning  Methodologies for Learning Effectiveness); Department of Education-Schools Division of Camiguin (Innovations in Access to Education, and Learning Spaces and Places); and Chiang Kai Shek College (Innovations in Leadership, Governance and Management), 

Also, for the second consecutive year, the Oscar M. Lopez (OML) Award for Educational Leadership is given to Dr. Maria Cristina Robles, Principal of Navotas National High School.  Dr. Robles has been the principal for eight years of the school with a student population of 3,000 yearly. She holds various degrees and has been given a higher position in DepEd but her love for the school and engaging with its stakeholders led her and the school itself to outstanding performance. 

They were presented in a ceremony held recently at the Dolphy Theater inside the ABS-CBN compound.

“This award means so much to us because this represents our collective efforts and our collective aspirations,” said Dr. Gregorio Cyrus Elejorde, Schools Division Superintendent of DepEd School Division of Carcar. “I dedicate this award to all the men and women behind our school’s triumph. Without them, our success will be nothing,”

Atty. Dominador Buhain, REX Group of Companies Chairman and current President of the Philippine Book Development Federation, Inc., proudly commended the recipients for their significant contributions in uplifting the quality of teaching and learning in the country.

“We all believe in the value of promoting learning effectiveness and efficiency in schools. For us at REX Bookstore, being an educational publisher since the 1950s, we know that our learning solutions are just one part of the equation.  Equally important, if not more important are the schools, which are the hub of learning. They are our students’ second home. How these schools adapt to change greatly influence how our learners adapt to the increasing demands of this complex modern world,” he said.

Apart from the smart incorporation of technology, community-based learning was integral to the inspirational success of the EETA winners. By significantly re-designing and implementing new academic programs and inspiring the school community members to work together, the “smallest schools with limited resources” have achieved their ultimate goal, which is to deliver best teaching practices and student learning excellence.

Dr. Ed Morato, President of Bayan Academy, lauded the award recipients for using “weaknesses” such as their smallness and inferior resources as a driving force to customize programs and craft superior strategies that deliver “real” and sustainable beneficial results for students.   

“We knew then back in 2011 that we wanted to come up with a program that will motivate schools to actually upgrade themselves, uplift themselves and transform themselves not so much in their curriculum and materials but also in their learning methodologies, places and spaces. While there may be still room for big schools to innovate and transform, we wanted the ‘smallest’ schools, even the ‘strangest’ schools, to have a chance of getting this award.  So we never know who will apply, and we never know what kind of innovation they will introduce. But one thing is very clear: Did the innovation impact the students?” Dr. Morato said.

The 5th EETA awarding ceremony concluded with the launch of the book “Excellence in Educational Transformation: Text and Cases, Volume 5” by Dr. Eduardo Morato, Jr., President of Bayan Academy and the announcement of next year’s 6th EETA.

For more information about the EETA, call 920-3025; email: or visit Bayan Academy at 827 EDSA, Quezon City.