Immaculate Conception College Balayan

Article excerpt

ICC @ 73: Providing the Filipino youth a solid, well-grounded Catholic Christian education

Humble beginnings

It was no less than a parish priest who conceived and born the indigenous idea of extending Catholic education to his parishioners. He was Father Aniceto Cordero, who was assisted by his uncle, Fr. Bernabe. It took years of tedious negotiations with different religious orders before they arrived at a tangible result.

The year was 1935, when the Augustinian Recollect Sisters accepted the challenge of Father Cordero and took up his proposal to open a Catholic school. This marked the birth of Catholic education in Balayan. The Bishop of Lipa approved the establishment of the school which was named after the patroness of Balayan, the Our Lady of Immaculate Conception.

The primary aim was to give the Filipino youth a solid, well-grounded Catholic education in accordance with the mandates of the constitution of the Philippines. The old convent of Balayan, which was ceded by Rev. Fr. Cordero to the sisters became the first premises of the school and the management was placed entirely in the hands of the Augustinian Recollect Missionary Sisters headed by Sor. Rita de la Immaculada Maria, the Superior, under the generalship of the late Mother Presentacion de San Jose of Lipa.

During the early years of its foundation, the difficulties of running the school were big and numerous. At first, the school offered only the primary course which was recognized on April 16, 1937. Soon, the general intermediate course was opened and recognized on April 7, 1938.

In 1939, Intermediate courses were offered. In 1941, the school's name was changed to Immaculate Conception College. Several collegiate courses were offered in 1942 such as Preparatory Law, Associate in Commercial Science, and Junior Normal. Due to the constant appeal of the parents, the Secondary Course was opened. In 1945, the need for co-education was realized as there were many boys who were out of school at that time. In 1946, Government Recognition was given to Secondary Course. However, in 1947, the school opened the High School Boy's Department.

Significantly, in 1954, the school ranked second in the achievement test in Batangas, and seventh place throughout the Philippines.

In 1958, Bachelor of Science in Education was offered and was given recognition. On June 10, 1959, the four-storey building was built due to the rapid increase of the students' enrolment in the college department. The school turned out able graduates every year who open head to competitive entrance and civil service examination. In the opening of the school year 1962-65, three additional courses were offered: Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, Bachelor of Science in Commerce and Bachelor of Science in Home Economics which were given recognition in the year 1958, 1963 and 1965, respectively. With the total enrolment climbing to 1,400, it again became imperative to construct a new building to meet the increasing student population. Upon approval by the Rev. Mother General and her council, the work started. The construction was finished and blessed on September 8, 1963.

During the 1970's, the school experienced the turmoil of activism. But through the Christian manner and dynamism of the Augustinian Recollect Sisters, everything was put into peace and tranquility.

The school garnered success in the academic competition like winning the title Most Outstanding Teacher in the Division of Batangas in the year 1983. The school's development in the physical features, academic excellence, moral and spiritual development was attributed to the school's able management and leadership.

In the year 1988, the new high school building was built and was made ready in 1990. Bachelor of Science in Accountancy course was opened and given recognition in the year 1995. In 2002, four-storey Talangpaz Building (named after the A. …