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Trumpeting the Decay of the Philippine Normal University December 20, 2009

Posted by Arvin in Current Affairs, Filipino Studies, School.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I’m learning to hate PNU now.

I never used to. I used to look up to this school as one of the country’s best. And then it hit me: The majority of the teaching and administrative workforce operating the public/private school systems here in the country come from the Philippine Normal University.

Now, i am about to raise overlapping issues here, but that is not the concern. Whether there’s funding or not, the issue still stands: the university is producing a multitude of sub-competent teachers along with an outstandingly brilliant few. 

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *   

I remember an anecdote shared by a friend.

The story goes like this: The teacher was discussing introductory stuff, and in the course of the discussion, his classmate casually mentioned that she’s a physics major and that she deals with a lot of theoretical physics.

She caught the ire of her professor, who then proceeded with criticizing PNU’s Physics Curriculum and how incompetent its products are. The prof went on and on at how conceited the students in front of him are, and even went borderline when he said they’re nothing but lowlifes so get back on your paperwork and finish the problem set.

Or something to that effect.

The professor by the way is an accomplished theoretical physicist working for the government.

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *    

Another story was from my sister, who spent her freshman and sophomore years in PNU. When she spent a semester in one of the universities along Recto, she had the most appalling classroom experience with the students and the instructor.

The professor yakked and yakked gibberish, and was sorely transliterating Pinoy concepts in a Victorian-cum-Academic concocted English. My sister, through the course of the session, almost dominated the discussion as most of the students in the class had less or no clue of what the professor was teaching. 

After the class ended, she could hear the students rave about her “performance”, thereby cementing in their minds the so-called fame that PNU students have: smart, country-loving, diligent seekers of knowledge. And my sister said she never discussed anything life-changing or worthy of publishing. She merely articulated her opinions explicitly.

She’s really not the student-leader type, nor the campus-nerdy sort. She told me she can’t believe her blockmates were blown away by her act when she knows she never really said anything grand.

I believed her.

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  * 

Now i don’t have statistics at hand, but all you have to do is visit your local public school (by surprise) and sit with your children for the next 30 minutes. Prepare yourself to be terrified. And also 10 pesos for the compulsory soup sold by the school’s co-op. 

And don’t get me started with the many professors i had at PNU Manila. I learned more from columnists of the major dailies than from their classes. I seriously doubt that they had ever engaged themselves in a worthwhile research to enrich their career.

In fairness with PNU, I still remember a good few. Let’s see, there’s Dr. Arceo, Sir Pat (Fil), Madame Clarisse (French), Sir Tacay (Eng)…. Dr. Sunga (Eng)…

I am also beginning to fear that this university might be heading the wrong direction, and possibly steering towards self-destruction if it doesn’t pull its act together.

So much for the National Center for Teacher Education title huh?

Funding is there. Tell us there’s still hope for our nation’s ” premier ” teacher-training institution. 

Now get up and clean your ranks of sub-standard, lukewarm instructors.



1. edlyn borja - April 20, 2010

as an incoming feshmen. i feel so sad knowing that the PNU Alumni speaks this way..
well i better find the truth.

2. Arvin - March 30, 2010

What’s sad is that the public does not know what is going on inside the university. Professors themeselves confess how many of their colleagues busy themeselves with contless “rakets” instead of pouring their focus on worthwhile research.

The NCTE role is no joke. I don’t see anyone taking this role seriously.

3. R. Warren - February 7, 2010

Frankness is not a license to say anything you want, wherever and whenever you want. The Bible says there is a right time and right way to do everything. “Never use harsh words when you correct an older man, but talk to him as if he were your father”…The truth is, all schools nationwide and even worldwide all have quirks or negative side. Just look at your own family, you can’t tell that it’s a perfect one. The same diamond looks different from diffrent angles. My dear alumnus or alumna, we can walk arm-in -arm without seeing eye-to-eye on every issue. It is our job to protect our alma matter. Focus on what we have in common. If a school must be perfect to satisfy you. the same perfection will exclude you from membership, because you’re not perfect!

zuko - August 30, 2011

yeah! you’re right! don’t be too harsh. your bitterness might eat you up. hehe.

4. Jason - December 30, 2009

Something tells me that some of these professors need to stop being so arrogant and actually learn some tact and better classroom management skills…:)

5. lostforwords101 - December 30, 2009

here’s another anecdote from the same theoretical prof that you mentioned.

he told his students who are struggling to solve a problem in Advanced Electromagnetism that his dog is way better than them and can easily come up with the correct computation and final answer in no time.

note that this statement was delivered w/ such mockery that you will never expect from a highly trained educator with doctorate degree from a distinguished university outside the Phils.

such a boost for the morale of these students! sigh.

6. More to Gain - December 24, 2009

Your teh mahn Heywang!

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