Sunday, October 22, 2006

Brain GAIN, not brain DRAIN!

Edi Sian, the author of PinoyPost, interviewed me almost two months ago about the Pinoy Teachers Network. PinoyPost is an on-line source of information about the lives of the Filipino diaspora. It is a blog of candid thoughts, no-holds-barred views and factual narrations of the issues faced by overseas Filipinos and their families.

Here it goes:

Last July, 119 Filipino teachers arrived in Baltimore, in time for the new academic year, to fill the vacant positions in the school system. They are not the first group of teachers to migrate from the Philippines and from the looks of it they will probably not be the last. When a month’s salary in the US is equal to one year’s salary in the Philippines, it is not surprising to see thousands upon thousands of qualified teachers leave the Philippines for the United States. Teachers follow a long tradition of migrant Filipino professionals supplying the global need for doctors, nurses, accountants, engineers, computer programmers etc. Recruiters hired by American school districts scour the archipelago for qualified teachers. The exodus of Filipino teachers has taken a toll on the Philippine educational system. It is not uncommon to have a teacher-to-student ratio of 1:150.

Pinoy Post interviewed Marisol Angala, the director of the Pinoy Teachers Network (PTN), a support network of Filipino teachers around the world. As the realities of teaching in a foreign country and in often times challenging and violent inner-city schools, Pinoy teachers find themselves struggling to adjust to their new environment. PTN provides the support needed by Pinoy teachers. Last year they organized a winter drive to collect winter clothing for teachers.

To learn more about the plight of our Pinoy teachers in the US, please listen to both portions of the interview. Click on the links below. The links will take you to a site where you can listen to the interview.

The first part of the interview discusses the background of the Pinoy Teachers Network and the current situation of Philippine education. To listen to Part 1 of the interview, click this link: Episode001A (est. 19 minutes)

The second part of the interview discusses the hardships faced by Pinoy teachers (some are beaten by their students) as they adjust to their work in the US. This portion also discusses what PTN can do to reverse the brain drain. To listen to Part 2 of the interview, click this link: Episode001B (est. 20 minutes)

For the transcript of this podcast, click this link: Transcript-PinoyPost-Episode001

If you have ideas on how to help the teachers adjust to the U.S. and suggestions on how to reverse the brain drain in the Philippines, please post your comments below.


Anonymous said...

Ms. Angala:
I write for the Manila Bulletin USA and I am interested in writing a feature article on the challenges facing newly-arrived Filipino teachers in the US. Please let me know how I may be able to contact you. Thank you so much.

Fleur C. Luntao

Anonymous said...

I want to apologize in advance. I really enjoyed your blog. BUt too much of my enjoyment moved me to ask you if i can apply there. I am a Psychology graduate undergrad and grad. And i took up a certificate course in SPED. I am a colege prof. Sana po mabigyan nyo ako idea. Yel here! Tnx

Promethean Planet


The following is the opinion of the writer and is not intended to malign any religion, ethnic group, club, organization, company, or individual. Any view or opinion represented in the blog comments are personal and is accredited to the respective commentor / visitor to this blog. This blogger reserves the right to moderate comment suitability in support of respecting racial, religious and political sensitivities, and in order to protect the rights of each commentor where available.