People who want to become teachers need to pass the Licensure Exam for Teachers or LET. The test is held twice a year and although many make it, there is also a great number of people who don’t.
The test is not easy, as it is common to see some individuals take the test multiple times. Some get discouraged and end up pursuing a different career.
But one persistent individual did not give up on her dreams of becoming a professional teacher.
Nelma M. Dahimulla graduated from Bachelor of Secondary Education, major in Agri-Fishery arts. It took her eight attempts to finally pass the LET. She tried over the span of four years and did not quit. The first time she failed, she took it lightly and was still optimistic.
“My first take naka 68 lang ata ako dayyy. masakit sobra pero madali lang man makamove on agad kasi inisip ko ‘ah wala ‘to first time ko kasi kaya nanibago lang siguro tapos wala pang review.'”
She got to the point where she was short of less than one percent to pass the exam, having scored 74.20%, 75% being the passing score. This was when she really felt down, she was so close but yet so far. She blamed herself for studying on her own instead of going to a review center. She said that teaching is her passion and that her family has always wanted this profession for her.
“gusto ko to maachieve at mas maging proud pa ang parents ko sakin at magawa ko ang gusto kong gawin that is to inspire other people through my profession. I love teaching others and giving inspirational advice. So yun nga bagsak pa rin ako kasi puro ako self review at sa mga post na reviewer sa Facebook lang ako.”
After getting tired of failing, she decided to enroll at CBRC (Carl Balita Review Center). She said that the review center helped a lot, as they do not just teach academics, but also how to have faith in God. The instructors make their students feel like they should not quit and are worth it, even if they have failed many times.
“Believe sila samin at saludo sila sa tapang naming mga Repeaters na kahit paulit-ulit na bumagsak kami still bumabangon parin kami para lumaban. Sobra talaga ako naiyak that day as in.”
The instructors always remind their students the reasons they should pass their exam. She enjoyed her experience there as she made new friends, too.
Before the day of the exam, she did a lot of praying and employed all the techniques she learned at the review center. Nelma had renewed confidence as she took the exam for the eighth time.
May 25 came, the day when the results would be released and Nelma was nervous the entire day. When her mother notified her that the list was out, she immediately went online to look for her name on the list. The internet was slow and she kept on refreshing the page until she saw her name,
She described it as almost having a heart attack due to being too happy. This was life changing for her and her family.
“Alhamdulillah pasado na ako!! muntik ng sumabog puso ko that day. haha sorrry naman na … overwhelming ang feeling eh 🤣 at sobra pa nung masabi ko sa parents ko na pumasa ako beshhh.. Priceless ang Mukha nila. yun ang mas nagpasaya sakin kesa sa result hahaha grabe sila.”.
She urges people, that are struggling to make it in life, to just believe in God and that He will give you what you need at the right time. She scored a 78.40 and is now a licensed professional teacher.
An Aeta teacher has now become the embodiment of the saying “if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again,” when her name finally appeared among the list of passers of the LET March 2016 results after her 25th attempt.
Teacher Gennie Panguelo teaches young Aeta children in Tarukan Elementary School located in Sitio Tarukan, Capas, Tarlac when the government began implementing strict measures to require teachers to become board passers.
Panguelo was able to work in the Department of Education after finishing a degree in Education. Back in 1988, the Civil Service Commission (CSC) was lenient about requiring professional licenses to teach. Aeta teachers like her who didn’t take the Licensure Exam for Teachers (LET) were allowed to teach.
Two decades later, it was specified that teachers who did not have licenses were going to be terminated. But at that time, Teacher Gennie had already taken the Licensure Exam for Teachers (LET) for 15 times, and failed in all of them.
Teacher Gennie shared in an interview with Doc Willie Ong, that there were people who insulted her, saying, “Ano ba ‘yan, maputi na ang buhok mo, ‘di ka pa rin nakapasa.”
A friend of Panguelo was able to refer her to the Carl Balita Review Center (CBRC). And luckily, they accepted the struggling teacher as their scholar.
And come her 25th try, Panguelo’s determination and unrelenting efforts have finally bore fruit when she passed the Elementary LET.
And to those aspiring LET examinees who have failed the board too, she has this advice: “Sa mga kabataan na tulad kong naghangad na maging titulado, huwag po kayong manghinayang. Kapag bumagsak, bumangon ulit. Kasi hindi lang nakukuha sa isang pagkakataon, kailangan natin ng tunay sa loob, sinseridad, at pagtitiyaga.”
Kakaiba!!24 beses bumagsak sa LET.Pero Pasado sa Licensure Exam for Teachers sa ika 25 take.Story ni Aeta Teacher Gennie Panguelo sa Tarukan Elementary School TarlacNgayon kumukuha sya ng PhD sa Teaching and Management. Wow.Lumulakad ng 3-4 na oras para makarating sa Tarukan Arta School.Sa Carl Balita review school sya nag review noong 25th take!
Posted by Doc Willie Ong on Friday, March 8, 2019
Panguelo received the Carl Balita Review Center’s Agila Award in 2018 and her inspiring story was made into a film entitled “Maestra” under the Carl Balita Productions. The film also features another story of a former high school principal, college dean, and a known inspiration speaker delivering entertaining poems on the spot.
Teacher Gennie has finished her Master’s degree and is now pursuing her PhD in Teaching and Management. And still, she continues to educate young Aetas in her community.
TAGS: Aeta, Capas, Carl Balita Productions, Carl Balita Review Center, Civil Service Commission, Department of Education, Doc Willie Ong, Dr. Carl Balita Production, Gennie Panguelo, licensure exam for teachers, Sitio Tarukan, Tarlac, Tarukan Elementary School, Willie Ong
Poverty is difficult to overcome, but it is not impossible. A fisherman’s daughter from the island of Biliran certainly never let hunger be a hindrance to her dreams.
A mere .20 percentage points separated the board topnotcher from second-placer Iah Bantang Seraspi of Romblon State University. This was during the September 2015 LET (Licensure Exams for Teachers) for the secondary level.
Recently, a post shared by the Biliran Island Facebook page—showing a tarpaulin of a toga-wearing Seraspi posted on the side of a small hut—has gone viral, resulting in an outpouring of congratulatory messages and testimonials of being inspired and touched by the young lass’s experiences.
With her father being a fisherman and her mother a housewife, Seraspi had to tutor children to supplement her family’s meager income. For her, a typical meal would be rice and anything that could give it flavor, such as salt, coffee, sugar or chips. A bowl of instant noodles, she considered a luxury.
But “Di man nila makikita ang laman ng tiyan ko (They won’t ever see the contents of my stomach), but they will definitely see the capacity of my brains,” Seraspi stated in her speech during a testimonial dinner.
“I came from a poor family.” Seraspi related. “I’m not telling you this to humiliate my family nor to get your sympathy. I just want you to realize how blessed you are if you were able to live a life better than mine.”
She encouraged others to make the most out of what they have to “improve your education… commit yourself and be ready to sacrifice. Have a strong motivation.”
Debbie Esquejo Garcia, a US-based registered nurse who financed Seraspi’s college education and who posted about Seraspi’s inspiring story, explained “…I posted it para mainspire din ung mga students na same situation sa kanya.. (I posted it to inspire students facing a situation similar to hers). poverty is not a hindrance to success..”