To my dear colleagues in the Department of Education,
We have been working together under the present administration for a little over two years now. Every one of you knows that the two years have not been all sweet and easy.
At the beginning of our service we inherited a long list of backlogs, received a fresh set of mandates, and accepted what perhaps can be considered as one of the most challenging assignments this department has ever dared to undertake: the reformation of our entire basic education system.
We encountered much resistance—both from without and within our department. In such circumstances, conflicts and arguments are inevitable. And we certainly experienced—even continue to do so—these confrontations.
Despite these challenges, we have proven thus far that we, here in the Department of Education, can work together and accomplish much for a larger purpose which transcends all our individual plans and agenda.
In two years, we have brought the Department back on track toward the fulfillment of all our backlogs in classrooms, chairs and textbooks.
In two years, we have efficiently rolled out, in phases, the K to 12 program, including the Mother Tongue Based, Multi-Lingual Education agenda.
In two years, we have effectively communicated the benefits and mechanics of all our programs to as wide a reach as possible, to all stakeholders and to the public.
All our progress and accomplishments cannot be credited to any one individual or group. They are all products of your collective effort, wherever you are assigned, whatever your role. We are all functioning parts of one complex body; every person fulfilling a task which is unique to him and beneficial to the entire organization.
As early as now, I thank each one of you for your contribution to the cause of education: to provide every Filipino child the opportunity to stretch her mind, broaden her heart, and nurture her spirit.
Our department has begun to become a true government for the people. One that is professional, competent, and committed, set on serving the needs of our countrymen.
Together with all the progress unfolding in the sectors of our economy, health, safety, public works, national defense, and private, the Philippines has clearly gathered momentum toward a better and brighter future.
We are part of this progress. We are making it happen.
This is an opportunity for all of us in the Department to make our mark in history. To leave a legacy for our children, and our children’s children. To make our families proud. This is the perfect time and opportunity to make a difference, and truly be agents of change. To change the face of government. To change the destiny of our people.
Let us work in synergy and convergence. Infect one another with renewed hope and optimism.
We do not deny the uphill climb that stretches out before us. The country we carry on our shoulders—our beloved home—remains huge and heavy. We would need all the focus, strength and determination we could muster to complete these improvements.
Let us revive the spirit of Bayanihan within each of us. Let us all do our part, share the load, that the burden may become lighter. And what seemed impossible can then become possible.
Today, we also join the rest of the nation in mourning the loss of and in laying to rest a true and dedicated public servant, Secretary Jesse Robredo.
Madaming iniwan si Sec Jesse na pwede nating pamarisan. May mga iniwan din siyang salita na may malalim na kahulugan. Aniya: Hindi lahat ng matino ay mahusay, at lalo naming hindi lahat ng mahusay ay matino. Ang dapat ay matino at mahusay upang karapatdapat tayong pagtiwalaan ng pera ang bayan. Kailangan ng DepEd ng mahuhusay at matitinong kawani dahil sa ating mga kamay ipinagkatiwala ang mga kabataan ng ating bayan.
Sec. Jesse’s commitment to uplift the lives of ordinary Filipinos through government is a real virtue all of us should remember and emulate. May the memory of his life and works inspire us, empower us and strengthen us. Like him, may we proclaim to our people that hope remains in government.
I have full faith and confidence in each one of you, and again, Maraming salamat! We entrust all our efforts to the One who breathes new life into all that we do.
Mabuhay and DepEd! Mabuhay ang kabataang Pilipino!
BR. ARMIN A. LUISTRO FSC