7 Qualities of Filipino Teachers in Baltimore City, Maryland U.S.A

7Q

  1. Dreamers

We came to Baltimore City because we have a dream or should I say dreams? This includes the following:

  1. Experience teaching in the US and to grow professionally
  2. Help our families back home, send our siblings, children, niece or nephew to college
  3. Have a better future
  4. Be financially stable
  5. Find Mr. or Ms. Right to marry and build a family

We never stopped dreaming and regardless of age, we seek to improve ourselves more especially in the field of education. We have Filipino teachers who completed their graduate and post-graduate degrees at Johns Hopkins University, Towson University, Coppin State University and others. We are so fond of Arnel Pineda’s song “Don’t stop believing.” so we never stop believing and chasing our dreams.

  1. Dedicated and Loving

Filipino teachers are known for the quality of work that we do. Students will say that we teach differently, we love and care for them, you will hear praises from school principals and other coworkers because Filipino teachers are dedicated and hard workers. We teach from the heart and they see that we love what we do. To many of us, we consider teaching as our mission in life. We do it with the best that we can because we do it for the glory of God.

  1. Grateful

We are forever grateful for the people who were used by God to make it possible for us to be here in the Unites States like Dr. Avenida, Ms. Cheryl, Mr. Duque and Ms. Hannah. They opened the door of opportunity for us to teach and be a part of teaching the inner city kids. We are so blessed to have administrators who love and support Filipino teachers. We are eternally grateful for Baltimore City Public Schools because we have learned a lot about urban education. BCPS was indeed a great training ground for us all. Baltimore is our first home in the US and there will always be a special place in our hearts for this charm city.

  1. Inspirational

We always have at least 1 true-to-life story that we can share with our students and colleagues that will inspire them Let me share the story of one teacher. She told her story growing up she needed to sell bread, banana cue or any food before going to school just to have some money to buy the school supplies and pay for the projects in school. A lot of times she would come to school with her baon “boiled sweet potatoes” or corn. Growing up in a big family they could not afford to buy toys so they built their own: drawing a doll on a paper, cutting and coloring it to make it look pretty. To dress her up, she would do the same: draw, cut and color and put it on the paper doll. Students get teary-eyes every time they hear stories like this and it make them realize how fortunate they are because they don’t need to work just to get their education; it is given to them freely by the government including the food and even school supplies.

  1. Achievers

Filipino teachers are world-class teachers. We are known for our passion in teaching. Many of us believe that whatever we do, we do it all for the glory of God. As a result many of us go beyond what was asked for us to do and we excel in our workplaces. Many of our Filipino teachers achieved greater heights by getting proficient and highly qualified evaluations, some are working very closely with the administrators by serving as a school leader like department head coordinators or IST, IEP chairperson and team leader. Some are recognized as lead or model teachers. Many are awarded as teacher of the month, teacher of the year, teacher as a hero, best teacher, best performance, perfect attendance and others. We all celebrate each other’s success and we are truly “proud to be a Filipino”.

  1. Risk-takers and survivors

Filipino teachers put everything on the line to survive and thrive in teaching especially in an urban setting. We face challenges every day but let us remember that every challenge that we face is an opportunity for God to strengthen us. Remember our theme song: “I Will Survive” during our first year of teaching? Yes, indeed we survived and we say “if you make it in Baltimore you can make it anywhere”. Whether we choose to stay in Baltimore City or move to another state because of visa sponsorship issues Filipino teachers are risk- takers. We don’t want anything to hinder our stay in the US so we try to find ways to survive. We take the risk no matter what the cost is. The Filipino teachers in Baltimore City are scattered across the US. We have teachers who moved to Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Louisiana, New Mexico, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Delaware, D.C, North Carolina, Virginia, and South Dakota to name a few. We have given up our high-paying job, best healthcare and other benefits just to continue working in the US. We risk everything for the future of our children…of our families. We have to be strong, take the risk of the unknown to be able to pay our debts and provide for our families.

  1. Full of faith

Cheryl Curtis (0ne of the HR representatives who interviewed us in the Philippines) known us for our strong belief in God and for our unwavering faith. She knows that we work hard but we pray harder. Working in Baltimore City especially during our first year away from our loved ones is very challenging and the only place where we find comfort is in God’s presence. We are blessed to have a very welcoming Filipino community that brought us closer to God. We were able to find churches and other religious organizations that treated us more than a family. As we go through trials and storms our faith is made stronger than before.

Today I believe that God is reminding us of the 7 qualities of Filipino teachers in Baltimore City. He is reminding us that we are world changers and difference makers. We’ve been here for at least 7 years and sometimes we are asking God why is it taking so long for us to get the stability that we’re praying for. Those teachers who stayed in Baltimore may have hidden fears because they don’t know how will the sponsorship turn out. Many of us tried different ways, may be moved to another state but until now we are not sure when are we going to get our permanent status but God is reminding you that you are FULL of faith and He is FAITHFUL to fulfill His promise. He brought us here because He has a purpose and we have a mission to fulfill. Hebrews 11:1 talk about faith…that is being sure we will get what we hope for. It is being sure of what we cannot see.

Whenever you find yourself worrying about the future, pray and return back to God. He will show you the first step forward, then the next step and the one after that until you see the whole staircase. Relax, enjoy the journey, take time to smile and be thankful for what He has done and what He is about to do in your life. Trust Him and have faith because He said in Psalm 32:8 “I will instruct you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.”

Don’t let the devil steal your joy or put you down. You are a world-class teacher. You are a world changer. You are a difference maker. You will reap the rewards of your faith and obedience to God is His time.