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1. Intrams and Pisay Curriculum : 18:10

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This rant's from Julius B. Legaspi III:
Thank you for those who sent their comments so far. Rest assured I will try to accommodate your inputs. Before we engage in endless debate (all talk no action), the SA's appeal is only to try bringing back the Intrams again (as any other high school, special or not does). Sports development is a basic teenager right! The disappearance of the Intrams and support for varsity teams are just symptoms of a BIGGER problem. We cannot solve EVERYTHING right away but we have to start somewhere.

I'm MAD because I see those who really wish to work hard and yet their efforts are never enough to do well. I'm not talking about the exceptionally gifted but the ordinary Pisay scholar who simply strives to be the best he/she can be. Ito yung tipo na may schedule pero pag pinagkasya nila lahat ng gagawin, kinakain ng mga kung anu-anong requirement pati oras ng pagtulog at weekends. Isn't anything SACRED anymore? Besides you are only YOUNG once! Kahit high IQ ang isang bata, bata pa rin siya. I'm not defending the SLACKERS although some of my students and non-students accused me of coddling them. NO! I really wished to understand EVERYONE! To answer the naysayers, I can cite a lot of students who were written off in high school who are now the BEST persons they could be. Since I gave them leeway then and guided them accordingly, they have gained the confidence they may have lost during their Pisay years. There might be a loophole in the entrance exam but still we have to hope that you have to take it twice, somehow mahirap na mambola to get yourself in. Sabi nga ni Dr. Penano-Ho, head ng Phil. Gifted Association, these are the 'cream of the crop.' How come in certain subjects most of the students fail? Shouldn't we be alarmed with that na parang charade lang pala ang klase? Teachers try to finish the lessons kahit konti lang nakakaintindi. Estudyante, magpapanggap na kaya na hindi naman. Tapos, pagdating ng exams, bagsakan. Ano, solusyon? Tutors? (No offense to those who offer this service, it was my bread and butter then in college). But dependence on tutors only make the classroom irrelevant. Di na makikinig sa teacher dahil may magpapaliwanag naman later. Nagturo pa ang teacher. Umattend ka pa ng klase. Magkanya-kanyang tutor na lang sila lahat. MORO-MORO (no offense to the Moros) ang nangyayari.

Yes, Pisay is a special school so don't give importance to the arts and non-science endeavors. We can still true to our mandate when we provide AVENUES, OPPORTUNITIES for students to dabble from time to time. Take note dabble not really specialize. Who knows? Their calling might really be in the arts. MAGPAKATOTOO NA TAYO. All your college life, di ka masaya sa course mo dahil may kontrata ka sa Pisay. Ano mangyayari? Matagal ka gagraduate dahil babagsak sa walang gana o di talaga kaya. You end up becoming miserable and might even commit the greatest injustice, take away your life, ending all of your posssibilities. If you're meant somewhere else, follow your HEART. Even Pisay acknowledges people like Butch Dalisay, Jessica Zafra, a music conductor, a powerdance instructor, chefs, homemakers because though they didn't end up as strictly scientists and engineers, their Pisay training made them more effective in those non-science endeavors. Being scientific means being effective in whatever you do. Making things better is TECHNOLOGY. You are only effective if you LOVE what you do. If you love what you do, you do it BETTER then SOCIETY benefits. Development is never far for people who are happy and at PEACE with themselves. They have a sense of purpose.

I'm not pulling YOUR legs. Go to Friendster, read those testimonials. I think in my own small way, I was able to empower each and every one student I met. Since they believe in THEMSELVES, I know CHANGE will come. It may not be NOW but IT WILL. These replies to my sincere letter are only the tip of a snowballing affirmation that we are zeroing in on something. Some of them might teach in Pisay, become directors, become DOST staff, or even government officials. If they don't forget that they were once students, they will be more sympathetic.

Why am I very optimistic? I have some students who already graduated and still studying who have developed attitudes that will help this country rise. You may accuse me of grandstanding since I'm migrating. I won't be part of the change. Love for one's country knows no distance. I can still inspire people even when I'm away. Some are already doing it. I'm so happy this school year that I have also gained the courage to also reach out to students who are not in my class. I may not be able to teach the lower years but some are already enlightened.

Proof that things are changing. This Thursday they agreed to give students a break. Especially for the 4th year, this was IMPORTANT! Do you know that after periodic exams, they had to put up the FAIR in October take note! Yet, while they were doing that some were still taking post-quarter requirements. Ang intindi ko pag post-quarter para lang sa mga mag-mamake-up pero ibang usapan na kung buong klase may post-quarter. Any logical person would ask: di pala kaya sa isang quarter bakit pinipilit? If you recall my point in the earlier letter, some of the topics uulitin din naman sa college. Case in point: among the science subjects, bio lang ang wala halos bagsak and most of those who graduate end up taking bio. Why? The Bio unit really took to heart their students pleas. They reviewed their curriculum and only retained the essential ones, yung talagang basic na kelangan nyo in the future if you wish to pursue the field. Masaya sila sa Bio. May sense of wonder. They really feel they are learning not just cramming stuff in their heads. Sabi nga ni TJ of 01, pakialam ba nya sa mga equations kung sa field niya wala naman siyang relevance. Imagine if all teachers insist that the world revolves around their subjects. If you are a HS student, you are like working for 10 bosses. Sa mga nagwo-work na or nag-O-OJT, di ba isang boss pa lang ang hirap na pakibagayan, tapos may mga asungot ka pang co-workers.

They are wondering how come students in Diliman are not achieving in contests, passing the UPCAT like before. If you really know your Pisay history, then classes ended at 2pm. So as your older teachers attest, students then could be free to explore some more and be more creative (which is a basic ingredient of any innovation). Being free doesn't mean your idle. It means you relax your mind by playing sports, engage in clubs, chat with your teachers. These informal chats are actually more enriching because the teacher will be more able to connect the lessons to a student's life.

STOP the INSANITY! Why are we such in a hurry to cram everything in a teenager's head even if he has a HIGH IQ? Quality over quantity! Less is more! The geniuses can take care of themselves, these are the type who don't care about anyone else. We must help those who strive but certain structures make it difficult for them to achieve their potential.

Please don't hesitate to react because after we get the Intrams approved, curriculum review is never far behind.

Ito ang totoong pakikibaka! Remember corruption of the best is the worst. We are making sure we are educating the cream of the crop right so they can help more. The massses will always follow anything that leads. A pisay scholar is born to lead.

Your reactions affirm that small efforts DO make a DIFFERENCE!

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2. Oooh, Perl is cool : 23:40

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perl -e 'print "*" x 80 . "\n"'

I didn't know about x number...

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