I didn’t know that saying yes over the phone to a teacher friend of mine from L A U S D 

inviting me to come aboard FCS would jumpstart my love for my own cultural heritage 

followed by many succeeding years of intense involvement in teaching and planning. Since 

I stepped foot in the classroom to team teach at Carmenita Middle School , with one of its 

cofounders, Lita Clamor, I was fascinated with relearning for myself some of the songs I 

knew as a kid teaching them now to the eager Filipino American youth. I gained greater 

appreciation for what may have been dust collecting-items stashed away as memorabilia 

brought over from the Philippines, now being presented in a show- and- tell sharing. 

Tagalog phrases, riddles, Filipino games, heroes were integrated in my teaching. My fervor 

for the traditional values was awakened as role playing became the means to express theme. 

Thus each summer, I would dabble in scriptwriting for a skit for the students to perform 

on stage to an audience during the culminating event, we fondly called as Graduation 

Day. Of course, emceeing this much awaited day also meant introducing dances with their 

background trivia. Even Filipino food became tastier when prepared and shared by the 

parents with their children actually being engaged in cooking some of their recipes with the 

teacher. Most of all seeing bonds of friendship effected by the summer experience of letting 

kids learn and have fun together with no pressure of earning a grade , was for me the best 

deal about being a teacher in FCS. The reward at sessions’ end was a beach trip…why not?

I found myself not only teaching, doing fundraisers as going caroling, recruiting 

volunteers and teachers to teach, but just wanting to do more. FCS was now in my blood ---

time to make an official logo to identify our “blood” relationship as it were, being bonded 

by our Filipino heritage. I doodled and came up with the FCS logo using the colors of the 

flag. Our insignia made us known to our community ; thus we had it was printed on a 

tarpaulin to hang at the place we would hold our classes. Whether we were in Cerritos at 

Carmenita Middle School, ABC Unified School District lobby, or Artesia at Holy Family 

Parish classrooms and finally at Norwalk , St Linus School classrooms, FCS found its 

“home.”

More than fourteen years have passed since I said yes and I continue to say yes to the 

brave and amazing young adults , some of whom, may have grown from being a part of 

FCS. They are charged with the ardent desire to prove FCS’s weight in gold by continuing 

its mission to preserve the Filipino cultural heritage. I have grown too in realizing that as my 

being a retired teacher . Though my changing role has demanded of me to shift gears, I 

continue to teach with the district schools and as a grandmother, I enrolled one of my six 

grandchildren with FCS last summer and will again, this coming summer.