ERNANI FERNANDEZ JR., a Technology and Livelihood Education instructor at Palo National High School in Palo, Leyte, has been named as one of this year’s 10 Outstanding Teachers by Metrobank Foundation Incorporated.
The 38-year old Fernandez is a father of two children and married to a grade school teacher in Palo.
MBFI president Aniceto M. Sobrepeña in a statement lauded Fernandez and other awardees as “instruments of nation-building.”
There were 467 teacher-nominees in this year’s search.
On March 11-14, 2014, four months after Eastern Visayas bore the brunt of super typhoon Yolanda, Fernandez and another Filipino teacher travelled to Barcelona, Spain to represent the country in a Global Forum of education experts sponsored by Microsoft.
Teaming up with other three educators from Austria, Egypt, and Japan, Fernandez led their group to win the top award during a competition which focused on technology-aided instruction to develop 21st century skills.
“I’ve learned a lot from this global experience. I met the expert educators in the world… their innovative strategies in teaching and of course since it is Microsoft, the innovative strategies mean the use of technology in teaching. We exchanged ideas,” Fernandez earlier said.
In 2012, Fernandez was also recognized as one of the innovative teachers in the country during the 7th Search for Innovative Teachers Leadership Award of Microsoft Partners in Learning.
“Maybe God has a purpose in letting me live to represent the country in Barcelona and let the voices of the Paloanons be heard that we need help to rebuild Palo National High School…This achievement is for my students who worked with me on the project,” Fernandez told The Standard in an earlier interview.
“I am just a simple person. I dreamed before of just seeing myself in a Metrobank photo, but of course educators should know the right thing to do to educate the students…If we will be committed to our work and enjoy the profession, maybe eventually whatever dreams we have will happen,” said Fernandez online after receiving words of praises from the public.
Fernandez and other awardees will receive their gold medallions, trophies, plaques of recognition for their schools, and cash prize of P 500,000 each on September 3, 2015 during the Metrobank’s 53rd anniversary celebration.
In 2013, Maria Lorna L. Garnace, a teacher at Philippine Science High School-Eastern Visayas Campus in Palo, Leyte, also won Metrobank’s Outstanding Teachers awards.
Meanwhile, the other 2015 Metrobank Foundation outstanding high school teachers are Ronaldo C. Reyes of Tabaco National High School (Tabaco City, Albay); Dr. Myrna B. Libutaque of Philippine Science High School- Western Visayas Campus (Jaro, Iloilo City); and Milagros C. Banan of Ernesto Rondon High School (Project 6, Quezon City).
The other awardees in elementary are Rejie F. Palmos of West Visayas State University (La Paz, Iloilo City); Benjamin M. Castro of Francisco Benitez Elementary School (Tondo, Manila); Amcy M. Esteban of Legarda Elementary School (Sampaloc, Manila); and Irene G. Dela Cruz of Carmona Elementary School (Carmona, Cavite).
For higher education are Dr. Thomas Edison E. Dela Cruz of the University of Santo Tomas and Dr. Analyn V. Salvador-Amores of University of the Philippines-Baguio.
This article has been re-published from Manila Standard Today, August 3, 2015