William Moraca shows off the award he received from Princess Maha Chakri of Thailand. Photo by Jay Dayupay, ABS-CBN News SOCSKSARGEN
GENERAL SANTOS CITY - A 46-year-old Filipino teacher has received international recognition for his contribution in the field of education.
William Moraca is the school head of Datal Salvan Elementary School in Barangay San Jose, General Santos City. The school is located in the outskirts of the city, and can be reached by passing through five rivers and steep roads.
This far-flung school also became Moraca's road to receiving the prestigious Princess Maha Chakri Award in Bangkok, Thailand.
Moraca was hailed as the only Filipino teacher who was chosen by the Princess of Thailand in the field of education and in the development of the quality life, especially for the disadvantaged.
Eleven Asian countries participated in the awarding ceremonies, and Moraca was considered as Asia’s finest teacher.
"Hindi ko talaga inakala na 'yong mga ginagawa ko sa aming paaralan may re-recognize din sa ibang bansa," Moraca said.
Moraca has been very helpful to the community of his students in Datal Salvan. He modified solar panels in order to supply electricity in the classrooms, so his students would learn how to use the computer.
Department of Education (DepEd) Schools Division Superintendent Gildo Mosqueda said he is very proud of Moraca.
"Nagsimula kasi 'yon sa pagtanggap nila ng mga pinaglumaan nang computers, gusto kasi niya matutong mag-aral ng computer ang mga estudyante niya kaya gumawa siya ng paraan para magkaroon ng kuryente doon sa eskwelahan niya sa bundok," Mosqueda explained.
Moraca, however, did not stop there. The community has been experiencing hygiene problems due to lack of water supply. His next innovation was to get water from the falls and pump it to the school and to every home in Datal Salvan.
Moraca's story amazed local officials and recommended that some of his works be shared to other schools. He is known in the city as the best teacher, but he continues to explore more.
Aside from receiving a plaque from the Princess of Thailand, Moraca also received a cash prize, which he said he will use to create a type of coal made from solid wastes.
"No wonder why Moraca is the country's outstanding school administrator in the country," Mosqueda said.
Moraca started to make a name in General Santos City by using recyclable materials as powerful visual aids.
In his classrooms, Moraca was able to set up closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras and other audio-visual materials helpful to the learning of his students.
The Princess Maha Chakri Award was established by the Teacher's Council of Thailand to honor the Princess' endeavors in the field of education. The award was also given on the occasion of Princess Maha Chakri's 60th birthday.