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Last updateFri, 19 Oct 2018 12am







    Thursday, October 18, 2018-8:54:32P.M.






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For 7th year in a row, Mount Carmel School opens new school year with another enrollment boost

(MCS) —  Marking a seventh year in a row of enrollment increases, Mount Carmel School opened doors for the new 2018-2019 school year with over 600 students, up from a historic low of 260 seven years ago. In addition to the enrollment increase, the school launched the year with some new additions, including new teachers, new courses, and new solar panels.

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Kindergarten student Victoria Terlaje is all smiles on the first day of the new school year. 2nd grade teacher Zita Sablan, right, lines students up on the first day of the school year.
High school teacher Filmah Buenaflor walks seniors through rules and procedures for her classroom. Seniors Gary Camacho, right, and Jalen Aldan, listen attentively to learn more about school policies and procedures.
Student Council president Dayna Macaranas reads the 1st reading during the opening Mass of the Holy Spirit. Fr. Allan Cabatian blesses Mount Carmel School faculty, staff, and administrators at the opening Mass of the Holy Spirit.  MCS photos

Regarding the enrollment increase, school president Galvin Deleon Guerrero credited the teachers. “When we launched our 2017-2020 Strategic Master Plan last year, one of our top priorities was improving instructional quality, and that’s exactly what our faculty have done.” He added, “Under the leadership of our principal, Frances Taimanao, and our vice principal, Barbara Merfalen, who bring a wealth of experience and expertise with them, our teachers have used assessment data to drive what they teach and how they teach. Using a blend of innovative techniques and tried and true methods, our teachers are helping our students shine.”

One student who has shined is Student Council president Dayna Macaranas who is enthusiastic about the new school year. “I’m excited about us coming together as a family with a lot of school spirit.” Asked about what she and the council want to accomplish this year, Macaranas said, “We want to get students more involved in the school and in the community.”

While the school’s enrollment increased, the school is still committed to keeping class sizes small in order to have an optimal learning environment. This is why the school hired several new teachers. In the elementary level, Kimberly Tentia will teach K4, Tasia Sablan will be a teacher aide in K4, Kimberly Tudela will teach 2nd grade, and Zyron Castillo will teach 3rd grade. In the upper grades, Keiko Yamagata, who used to be the school’s business manager, is returning to teach social studies, Sarah Johnson will teach English, and Leeani Villagomez, the school’s secretary, will also teach high school and elementary art.

In addition to new teachers, the school is introducing new courses in creative writing and media communications and launching a number of new programs. The school’s information management system has been enhanced to include new human resource processes, such as digital time sheets. As reported recently, the school will also open the new year with 548 solar panels.

The first day of school started with the annual opening day mass, the Mass of the Holy Spirit, which was celebrated by Father Allan Cabatian. After proclaiming the Gospel, Father Allan led school employees in the Commissioning Ceremony of Catholic Educators, which is held every start of the school year during the Mass of the Holy Spirit. The ceremony highlighted the commitment of faculty, staff, and administrators to the school’s mission and philosophy.

While there has been a substantial enrollment increase, the school still has limited slots available in a few grade levels. For more information, call 234-6184 or visit