I made a visit to Everest Academy in Manila this week to meet with principal Ma. Lourdes N Cura, in order to better understand the developing private school sector in Manila, where schools are 100% focused on the local children of the fast developing middle class in the Philippines, especially in Manila and the developing cities. Its worth noting that the average age of people in metro Manila is around 28 yrs old, in the philippines as a whole, 35 yrs old, so a very young population. Most of this population have grown up with sending and receiving information via their mobiles, and although the penetration of smartphones is somewhere around 20%, this just confirms the potential in the future.
It's also interesting to note that if you really want to communicate with someone in the Philippines, then perhaps email is not the most effective, the vast majority of people in the Philippines do not have email addresses, but they all have facebook accounts. This to some degree reflects the culture of the Philippines in the sense that they all like to share what they are doing in a relatively public way.
It was great to meet with principal Ma, and to be able to share more about some of the key elements of the Finnish philosophy when it comes to education, and to learn from her the successes and challenges in the system and culture they operate in Manila. One thing that Polkuni HK will get more involved in in 2017 is the PD of teachers in places like the Philippines, with the appropriate experts from Finland.