2006.08.22: August 22, 2006: Headlines: COS - Philippines: Thomasites: Manila Bulletin: The Peace Corps, established in 1961, are but a modern version of the Thomasites

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Philippines: Peace Corps Philippines: The Peace Corps in the Philippines: 2006.10.19: October 19, 2006: Headlines: COS - Philippines: COS - Nepal: Missionaries: Thomasites: edweek.org: Peace Corps and the Thomasites : 2006.08.22: August 22, 2006: Headlines: COS - Philippines: Thomasites: Manila Bulletin: The Peace Corps, established in 1961, are but a modern version of the Thomasites

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The Peace Corps, established in 1961, are but a modern version of the Thomasites

The Peace Corps, established in 1961, are but a modern version of the Thomasites

The Thomasites demonstrated the tremendous goodwill that could be generated by the teacher. Many years after a Thomasites' tour of service, he returned and the warm and sentimental reception he received from the many Filipinos whose life he touched were evidence of a teacherís influence in shaping a society.

The Peace Corps, established in 1961, are but a modern version of the Thomasites

105th Anniversary of the Thomasites
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WILLIAM H. Taft, stressed the vital role of the teacher in nation-building when he served as Civil Governor of the Philippines. He went on to become the 27th President of the United States.

The Department of Education is the department through which the benevolent intention of the government is most clearly expressed. In the policing of the country, in the collection of taxes, the attitude of the government necessarily encounters opposition, but in the work of the education department of the government is simply a giver, a donor. The opportunity, therefore, for the American school teacher and the division superintendent to win the hearts of the Filipino people exceeded that of any other class of servants of the government.

The second Philippine Commission passed on January 23, 1901 Act No. 74, the Organic Act of Philippine Education. This law provided for the sending of American teachers to the Philippines to man the public school system in the country. These teachers arrived in Manila on August 13, 1901. They were popularly called "Thomasites" because the ship that brought them was named S.S. Thomas.

The Thomasites validated Governor Tafts observations about the teacherís crucial role in nation-building. It was they who endeared America in the hearts of many Filipinos. Throughout the American occupation of the country, not a single Thomasite was hurt. By their selflessness in teaching the Filipino youth and dedication to the teaching profession, they bridged the chasm that divided the colonial government and the people. It was they who planted American democratic institutions in the country, spread the English language, and established the American public school system which continues to this day. The Peace Corps, established in 1961, are but a modern version of the Thomasites.

The Thomasites demonstrated the tremendous goodwill that could be generated by the teacher. Many years after a Thomasites' tour of service, he returned and the warm and sentimental reception he received from the many Filipinos whose life he touched were evidence of a teacherís influence in shaping a society.




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Story Source: Manila Bulletin

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