Tudela, Misamis Occidental – With the Department of Education D.O. 62, The Division Schools of Misamis Occidental together with the National Commission for Indigenous Peoples (NCIP), the Local government of Tudela, Misamis Occidental and the Subanens Provincial Tribal Council of Misamis Occidental signed yesterday (August 6) the covenant to strengthen Indigenous Peoples Education (IPeD) and implement the Division initiated IPeD Framework Policy to preserve the culture and traditions of the Gensalugan Subanens of the province.
IPeD or the Indigenous Peoples Education is the one of the priorities found in R.A. 8371 or otherwise known as Indigenous Peoples Right Act of 1997 signed by then President Fidel V. Ramos to give way to the needs of the Filipino “Lumads” or Indigenous People of which according to NCIP, more or less 110 Lumad Tribes with their culture and traditions are to be preserved for their next generation.
In Misamis Occidental, Division Superintendent Dr. Jonathan dela Pena, implemented DO 62 thru its first initiative, Project “Suba” or the Subanon Balasahon (Subanen Books) in one of the Subanen (Gensalugan) Community in Mamalad, Calamba and established the first School of Living Tradition (SLT).
Project “Suba” is a collective written form of the Subanen Stories funded thru the Department of Education which comes from the elders and “Timuays” (Spiritual Leaders of the Gensalugan Subanens of Misamis Occidental)to be part of the implementation of Indigenous Peoples Education.
On Thursday, Another School of Living Tradition (Tonggo Elementary School) was launch in Tonggo, Tudela, Misamis Occidental that caters more or less 300 School Children of which 90% of them are Subanens.
With Local Government Officials of Tyudela led by Mayor Estela Ubot-Estano and its Sanggunian Bayan, The Provincial Tribal Council with its President Timuay Sofronio Cabatuan, Board Member Dodz Cabahug, the province Indigenous Peoples Mandatory Representative (IPMR), National Commission ofr the Indigenous People, and the Department of Education-Misamis Occidental Schools Division signed the Covenant promulgating its responsibility to preserve and nurtured the Subanen Traditions and Culture thru a IPKSP or the Indigenous Peoples Knowledge System and Practices.
IKSP is one of the issues and concern of the June 25-26, 2015 validation and finalization of the Indigenous Peoples Education Framework Policy together with the four major rights in the IPRA Act of 1997, the rights to Ancestral Domain, the rights to Self-Governance and Empowerment, the rights to social justice and the right to education.
Other issues and concern in the Indigenous Peoples Education Framework Policy also involves the DepED K to 12 Program that will be adopted also in the Indigenous Peoples Education, and lastly the Indigenous Peoples Political System.
Ms. Ivy Joy Rubio, the first IP teacher on her part said that,” it is a challenging being a full blooded Subanen to share and teach her knowledge to Subanen Children in understanding their own culture and tradition and be educated thru the Indigenous Peoples Education program of DepED”.
Meanwhile, with the covenant signed by DepED, LGU, the Provincial Tribal Council and NCIP will set the standards in educating the Subanens, particularly the Gensalugan Subanens of Misamis Occidental, not only for their children but also as well for their parents thru the school of living tradition which they are to be educated by their own Cultural masters and Elders with the support from the Department of Education School Division of Misamis Occidental.
On his part, Division School Superintendent Jonathan dela Pena who was adopted as a Subanon Leader thru their ritual of acceptance and named him “Datu Mananao” send a message of hope that thru DepED Misamis Occidental School Division who give time and effort, love, understanding, and commitment, IPED will awaken up the long sleeping culture of the Subanens Gensalugan of Misamis Occidental.( Mis.Occ News Bureau)