Matutum View Academy, Philippines

By Dante A. Dabucol

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Dante A. Dabucol is the Stewardship/Planned Giving and Trust Services Director of Southern Mindanao Mission, General Santos City. He is currently enrolled at the Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies, Silang, Cavite, Philippines and is pursuing a degree in Doctor of Ministry.

 

Matutum View Academy (MVA) is a co-educational boarding school on the senior level operated by the Southern Mindanao Mission of Seventh-day Adventists. It is located in Barangay Acmonan, Tupi, South Cotabato, Philippines. The school property is made up of approximately eight hectares with the administration building housing the administrative offices for both the academy and the college. The classrooms, auditorium, audio-visual room, library, science laboratory, cafeteria, and dormitories are separate from the college. The other buildings on the campus include faculty houses, college classrooms, high school classrooms, guesthouse, canteen, clinic, home economics, automotive shop, and powerhouse for water supply.1

The school has a tennis court, a basketball court, and a wide playground. The school grounds are well-kept, the surroundings are clean and green, and the environment is conducive to teaching and learning.

The school farm produces a variety of fruits and vegetables such as pineapples, bananas, corn, avocados, coconuts, marangs, jackfruit, and mangoes.

With the addition of buildings erected for the Adventist College of Technology, Inc.—a laymen-operated tertiary educational institution—the available space for the production of agricultural crops has shrunk. The land held by Matutum View Academy has increased by about six hectares due to land donated by the late Pastor Isaias C. Ladia, a former president of Southern Mindanao Mission.2

Developments that Led to Its Establishment

In the 1950s the Adventist message penetrated into the hinterlands of what is now the province of South Cotabato when Mr. and Mrs. Elias Espina came as missionaries to the village of Acmonan. As a result of their efforts, a mission school was established because the chief of that area (B’laan), Datu Tamba Piang—their first convert to Christianity—generously donated a piece of land for the mission school. Candido Fallan, another Seventh-day Adventist worker, was the first mission school teacher. The datu,3 seeing the benefits of Candido Fallan’s labor, did not hesitate to send several of his children and grandchildren to the mission school to obtain an Adventist Christian education. When Candido Fallan left to pursue further education, Mr. and Mrs. Angel Gepaya took his place as the mission school teachers. More families settled in this area and eventually a small Seventh-day Adventist church was put up and the mission school progressed.4

Pastor and Mrs. Angel Gepaya were succeeded by Clovis Arante. By then the mission school had become a primary school. In 1956, Candido Fallan came back to this village and resumed his work. A year later, Mr. and Mrs. Restituto Flores joined in as church school teachers. Their six years of hard work (1957-l963) in Acmonan upgraded the primary school to an elementary school which was called Matutum View Elementary School. San Juan headed the school, but then he was succeeded by Restituto Flores in 1967. In 1969 Gaudencio Somoso became the school principal. The enrollment increased, so Jeconias Solis and Manuel Arante were added as teachers.5

Founding of the School

The nearest academy was more than 100 kilometers from Acmonan, thus there was a need to establish a junior academy. Transforming their faith and vision into a reality, Matutum View Academy, the school of faith, was finally established in 1968 as a junior academy6 under the leadership of the following: Pastor Teofilo A. Layon, Southern Mindanao Mission President;7 Ishmael S. Solilapsi Sr. (Counselor of Tupi Municipality, Tupi, South Cotabato), Church School Board Chairman;8 Rogelio J. Aguadera, pioneering principal/teacher with the following additional pioneering teachers: Carlos M. Sombrio and Neda B. Magpusao.9

Matutum View Academy started with 46 first-year students and 29 second-year students. During the second year of operation, the enrollment increased to 105, and the third year of operation to 192.10 More buildings and equipment were acquired, and buildings were constructed with galvanized roofing, concrete walls (strengthened with bamboo), and doors and windows made of bamboo.

In 1971, MVA was granted permission to operate as a secondary school.11 Then in 1977, after several evaluations done by the Department of Education, Culture, and Sports through the Private Schools Area Supervisor of this institution, eventually MVA was granted Government Recognition No. 31, Series of 1977 to operate Academic Secondary Course.12

Matutum View Academy, like any other Seventh-day Adventist school, was established for the purpose of developing Christian character in young people. Its main objective is to prepare the youth for the Master’s service and for heaven; for usefulness not only on this earth, but also in the earth made new. The harmonious development of the physical, mental, social, and spiritual powers of the students is the great aim of this institution. It is the task of this academy not only to develop skills in the students to enable them to fill their rightful place in society, but also to prepare them for higher education with sterling character and excellent behavior.13

Before MVA was founded, there were eight elementary schools within the territory of Southern Mindanao Mission which were considered as possible feeders of MVA.14

History of the School, with Emphasis on Important Events and Periods

The enrollment varied throughout the years, with the lowest enrollment of 75 students in 1968-1969 and highest enrollment of 577 in 1989-1990.15

Some of the notable improvements during these years were the acquisition of more land as well as the construction of the administrators’ home duplex, clinic, cafeteria, and auditorium. These were mostly donated by the brethren. In 1986, Pastor Rogelio J. Aguadera was reassigned to MVA with Ismael R. Asuncion as the assistant principal. More teachers were employed because of the yearly increase in enrollment. At the founding of the school there were three pioneering teachers, then the number of teachers went up to 5-21. To add them all, including the present working force of the academy, there have been 90 faculty and staff who have served the school.16 More physical facilities were added, such as the administrative offices, classrooms, science laboratory, library, guesthouse, sports facilities, staff duplex, girls’ dormitory, water system, automotive shops, covered walk, renovation of the boys’ dormitory, and the auditorium.

In 1988 the school was accredited with the Association of Christian Schools, Colleges, and Universities (ACSCU), 89-C 9th Floor, Cubao, Quezon City, Philippines in Level II. More teachers upgraded their educational qualifications by obtaining Master’s and Doctor’s degrees.17 MVA is accredited by the Accrediting Association of the Seventh-day Adventist (AAA) Schools, Colleges and Universities, 12501 Old Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, Maryland.18

Matutum View Academy is strongly committed to training the youth for a well-balanced education in all dimensions of personal development. It has provided an array of religious programs, including internal and outreach activities that cater to the needs of the students. The inculcation of spiritual values through chapel convocations, Weeks of Prayer, Sabbath services, and other religious programs makes for an outstanding spiritual atmosphere on the campus. This is an area in which the school has enjoyed a distinctive reputation, gaining the admiration of parents and students alike. As a result, many students decide to be baptized every year. Church records reveal that an average of 30 young people accept Jesus as their personal Saviour through baptism annually. The school offers a number of extra-curricular activities and programs for the social development and personal growth of the students, as well as meeting their needs for physical development. The campus provides a setting for an education that focuses on the development of the students.19

Despite the establishment of a college at Southern Mindanao Academy, a sister school in Barangay Camanchiles, Matanao, Davao del Sur, the brethren in Acmonan opted to open Matutum View Christian College. With technical vocational programs as its flagship, the college offers education with mathematics as its specialization, including auto repair, computer programming, and nurses’ aide courses. All these courses have been recognized by the Commission on Higher Education Development (CHED) and the Technical Skills Development Authority (TESDA).20

The college progressed rapidly in physical facilities and equipment largely due to the generous assistance of the membership from here and abroad. The North-western Educational Foundation of the United States of America contributed more than six million pesos for the main building which houses three classrooms, eight offices, library, nursing aide laboratory, computer laboratory, and internet café. A four-classroom automotive shop with adequate tools and supplies was also built.21

In 2000, the leadership, seeing that the college could hardly stand on its feet, turned it over to Southern Mindanao Mission for its operation and management. The Matutum View Academy was tasked by its Board of Trustees to run the college. Elder Wendell M. Serrano was then the President of SMM and the chair of the MVA Board of Trustees. Under the management of Matutum View Academy, the name of Matutum View Christian College was changed to Adventist College of Technology, Inc. Since then MVA and ACT have worked together to educate the youth in the secondary and tertiary levels. More and more assistance has come from friends over the past few years.22

In 2012 a guesthouse was donated by the former Roselyn H. Tayo, MVA class of 1976. Stewart Jackson and Mrs. Leny Lamputi-Jackson also donated various equipment and facilities to the high school and college, along with their donations to the Seventh-day Adventist Elementary Schools in Southern Mindanao Mission.23

In 2013 the MVA Board of Trustees under Elder Roger O. Caderma’s chairmanship voted to separate the management of MVA and ACT to give both institutions opportunity to operate on their own. MVA is still the official institution of the Southern Mindanao Mission and ACT is operated by layman.24

Matutum View Academy offers senior high school education. The Department of Education has granted the school permission to operate high school on the senior level (grades 11 and 12). Its academic track offerings are General Academic Strand (GAS) and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM). Tech Vocational offerings are Health Care (HC NC II) and Computer Hardware Servicing (CHS NC II). These offerings are in collaboration and partnership with the Adventist College of Technology, Inc., the tertiary institution adjacent to the academy which has been working closely with the academy for the SDA Christian education of the youth in Southern Mindanao.25

Historical Role of the School (In the Church, Community, Nation, and World)

Throughout the years of Matutum View Academy’s existence as an institution, it has not only served Seventh-day Adventist young people, as it was intended to, but it has enrolled non-Adventist students from nearby places and from different parts of the Philippines. The response of parents when asked what has made them send their children to MVA is the changed lives of those students who had seemed incorrigible. The teachers serve as foster parents to students. The presence of family bonds has strengthened the Christian values in their lives because MVA provides opportunity for teachers to have worship time with their foster children and entertain them in their homes.

This institution trains young people for various responsibilities. There are scheduled Sabbaths when groups of students are assigned to visit churches and lead the Sabbath programs. In this way the membership is inspired in its Sabbath worship and students become involved as leaders or as members in the family, in the church, and in the community. On Sabbath afternoons students hold branch Sabbath Schools. Community children are taught of God’s love through Bible stories, religious songs, Bible memory verses, and finger plays. During important events in the barangay and town where the school is located, the school choir is invited to sing and students and the school band join in the parade. Students are also involved in clean-up drives of the barangay roads. Through all of these activities, the harmonious development of the four aspects (social, mental, physical, and spiritual powers) in the lives of the MVA students is fulfilled.26

Matutum View Academy currently has 3,673 alumni of which many, after having graduated from college, have found their rightful places in society, serving people in their various capacities. They are found working in and outside the Philippines as pastors, nurses, doctors, lawyers, engineers, teachers, college professors, office secretaries, medical technologists, dentists, dieticians, accountants, and in other kinds of work. In the Philippines alone, these include presidents of the two colleges and the university, mission president, mission director, judge, and government officials. The Christian values the students have inculcated into their lives during their stay at MVA have a great part in the competence, dedication, and honesty of the working force in the church, community, nation, and world.

What Remains to Be Done to Fulfill the Mission

It must always be the goal of the school to promote in tangible/perceptible ways the philosophy, mission, and vision of the school. The philosophy is: “God, the Almighty, is the only source of true education.” The mission is “To prepare the youth for their societal role and the coming of Jesus Christ.” The vision is “Quality Adventist education—preparing the youth for Christ’s Second Coming.” The faculty and staff, as well as the students, recognize their significant role in the realization of the philosophy, mission, and vision of the school.

List of Principals

The following is the list of principals who served the school from its founding to the present:

Rogelio J. Aguadera (1968-1970); Carlos M. Sombrio (1970-1972); Lorenzo S. Lacson (1972-1974); Abraham O. Neri (1974-1975); Anecito B. Acain (1975-1976); Hernando R. Zamora (1976-1977); Abraham O. Neri (1977-1980); Jonathan C. Catolico (Summer 1980); Jimmy F. Faderogaya (1980-1986); Rogelio J. Aguadera (1986-1997); Ismael R. Asuncion (1997-2017); Raquel L. Villanueva (2017-2018); Heavenly Peace M. Patricio (2018-present).27

Sources

“Brief History of Matutum View Academy.” Matutum View Academy Archives, December 28, 2017.

“Head Teachers, Elementary Schools.” SMM 50th Anniversary Souvenir Program, December 2015.

Matutum View Academy Enrollment Summaries, School Year: 1968-2019. Registrar’s Office on file.

Matutum View Academy Student Handbook, 2018.

MVA Promotional Reports, School Years: 1968-2019, Matutum View Academy Registrar’s Office.

Notes

  1. “Brief History of Matutum View Academy,” Matutum View Academy Archives, provided by Raquel L. Villanueva, Principal of Matutum View Academy, December 28, 2017.

  2. Ibid.

  3. Datu is a title which denotes the rulers of numerous indigenous peoples throughout the Philippine archipelago.

  4. Ibid.

  5. Ibid.

  6. “The School of Faith Summit (SCHOFA) 1988” (Matutum View Academy Yearbook, 1988), 12.

  7. Romulo Tuballes, “In Pursuit of a Dream,” December 2015, Southern Mindanao Mission 50th Anniversary Souvenir Program, 15.

  8. Matutum View Academy Yearbook, 1988, 12.

  9. Promotional Report, SY: 1968-1971 (Registrar’s Office on file).

  10. Enrollment Summary, SY: 1968-1971 (Registrar’s Office on file).

  11. Ismael R. Asuncion, “Brief History of MVA,” Southern Mindanao Mission, 50th Anniversary Souvenir Program, December 2015, 89.

  12. Matutum View Academy Student Handbook, 2018, 4.

  13. Ibid., 7

  14. “Head Teachers, Elementary Schools” SMM 50th Anniversary Souvenir Program, December 2015, 91-98.

  15. Matutum View Academy Enrolment Summaries, School Year: 1968-2019, (Registrar’s Office on file).

    MVA Enrollment Per School Year

    SCHOOL YEAR ENROLMENT
    1968-1969 75
    1969-1970 105
    1970-1971 192
    1971-1972 270
    1972-1973 308
    1973-1974 229
    1974-1975 352
    1975-1976 357
    1976-1977 376
    1977-1978 436
    1978-1979 351
    1979-1980 380
    1980-1981 365
    1981-1982 378
    1982-1983 376
    1983-1984 341
    1984-1985 346
    1985-1986 407
    1986-1987 479
    1987-1988 500
    1988-1989 505
    1989-1990 577
    1990-1991 560
    1991-1992 541
    1992-1993 474
    1993-1994 470
    1994-1995 495
    1995-1996 406
    1996-1997 398
    1997-1998 383
    1998-1999 330
    1999-2000 297
    2000-2001 281
    2001-2002 297
    2002-2003 282
    2003-2004 283
    2004-2005 267
    2005-2006 285
    2006-2007 289
    2007-2008 316
    2008-2009 293
    2009-2010 302
    2010-2011 281
    2011-2012 284
    2012-2013 297
    2013-2014 275
    2014-2015 272
    2015-2016 266
    2016-2017 322
    2017-2018 377
    2018-2019 500
  16. MVA Promotional Reports, School Years: 1968-2019, Matutum View Academy Registrar’s Office.

  17. Matutum View Academy Student Handbook, 2018, 5.

  18. Ibid., 7

  19. “Brief History of Matutum View Academy.”

  20. Ibid.

  21. Ibid.

  22. Ibid.

  23. Ibid.

  24. Ibid.

  25. Ibid.

  26. Rosie Ginson, retired MVA Registrar, interview by author, December 28, 2017.

  27. List provided by Merly Jane dela Fuente-Morcillo, MVA Registrar, November 20, 2018.

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Dabucol, Dante A. "Matutum View Academy, Philippines." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 09, 2021. Accessed January 19, 2021. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=GATO.

Dabucol, Dante A. "Matutum View Academy, Philippines." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 09, 2021. Date of access January 19, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=GATO.

Dabucol, Dante A. (2021, January 09). Matutum View Academy, Philippines. Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved January 19, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=GATO.