Saint Rita College, Manila – 100 years of Grace
Saint Rita College, Manila started in 1907 the “Escuela de Sta. Rita.” Motivated by love of God and neighbors, the college pioneers offered free education with only 30 pupils in kindergarten and special courses – Reading, Writing, Spanish, Religion, Music, Painting and Embroidery. These courses were given informally earlier. All instructions during the early years were in Spanish. The first Directress of the school was Sor Paulina del Purisima Corazon de Maria under the Superiorship of Rev. Fr. Celestino Yoldi, OAR.
The year 1908 marked a gradual progress of the school. The school building was constructed and classes were opened with the approval of the Bureau of Private Schools. This started the formal Augustinian Recollect Sisters teaching apostolate and it became the first school of the Congregation of the Augustinian Recollect Sisters in the Philippines.
When the Sisters began to teach English in 1911, the school was registered in the Bureau of Education under the name “Colegio de Santa Rita.” On September 29, 1921, the schoolâ€™s name was changed to St. Rita Academy.
In 1922, the primary and intermediate courses were recognized by the government. Ten years later in 1932, Domestic Science was offered. When the school offered College Courses in 1945, it was renamed Saint Rita College.
Government recognition was obtained for the General Secondary Course on February 27, 1946 and the first distribution of diplomas was done with the Justice Jose Abad Santos of the Supreme Court as the guest of honor. On July 1, 1946, kindergarten was given government recognition by Manuel Gallego, then Secretary of Instruction. In 1948, Vocational courses and the Elementary Teachers Certificate (E.T.C.) were offered.
The four – year Collegiate Normal Course leading to Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education was opened and given government Recognition in June 8, 1959. Later it opened its Elementary Department to young boys who sought catholic education. Bachelor of Science in Education (BSE) followed, with majors in English, Filipino, Mathematics, History, Home Economics, and minors in Theology, Library Science and Physical Education. The Liberal Arts (AD) Course was granted government recognition on July 3, 1972.
In keeping with modern technology in education, Computer Science was offered in the secondary and tertiary levels curriculum in 1993 and in the elementary and pre-school years later. To meet the demands of the times Hotel and Restaurant Management was offered in 1994.
For 100 years, Saint Rita College has been turning out Christian men and women who have become effective instruments in the spiritual and cultural progress of society here and abroad. With Godâ€™s grace, these graduates are now making their presence known as a morally conscious group in the different sectors of society and government.
Today, Saint Rita College shares the teaching mission of the church with its trust on evangelization through Catholic Education of the youth. It strives to be relevant to the needs of the times by preparing the youth for Christ-like living, inculcating gospels values and developing good Filipino citizens based on abiding faith in God and genuine love for country.
Saint Rita College has experienced the ups and downs of enrolment and financial instability, yet with Godâ€™s grace it withstood the test of time. In the process of growing, it had its own shares of joys and sorrows, trials and tribulations; yet it braved these challenges with optimism that God the loving Father, continues to sustain and strengthen it in His work of expanding His Kingdom on earth.
The College instituted many improvements and renovations through the years. The school facilities, especially the physical plant, are so well designed and equipped in order for the school to carry out with ease and efficiency and for the staff and students to achieve the learning outcome desired. With the teaching- learning process, best facilitated in a sound environment, the school ensures a healthy atmosphere for the learners and mentors. Every space in the campus is utilized for this purpose. Air conditioned library, continuous acquisition of laboratory apparatus and equipments, Audio Visual room, Computer rooms, Music room, H.E. are all provided for. The school Auditorium can accommodate the whole school community and visitors,whenever activities are held. The College canteen and dining room serve the requirements of students, faculty, and guests alike.
The College boasts of a Comprehensive Faculty Development Plan designed to ensure continuing formation for the faculty to internalize the schoolâ€™s educational purposes and objectives and the importance of the role they play in the Christian educational apostolate of the Congregation. The development plan is focused on achieving authentic witnesses to the Gospel of Christ, specifically geared towards the full integration and development of the human person.
The St. Rita College, Manila invensted on a Guidance Center deeply helping children learn to cope with parental conflicts and also parents as they face the challenges in the most child-centered ways possible.
The relationship between the school and community is one of dynamic interaction. The school has a mutual harmonious relationship with the wider community. It avails of its resources and assets whenever they are needed. Societal concern and the spirit of cooperation for societyâ€™s uplift are given emphasis in the curriculum. Formation of good citizens and law abiding people in the service of the country will concretize the social obligation of the institution.
Since its establishment in 1907, Saint Rita College, Manila has always been a paradigm of excellence. The school maintains a conducive learning environment basked in an atmosphere of warmth and camaraderie. With its mission, and philosophy geared toward providing quality catholic education, Saint Rita College has curved a niche for itself among the schools in the country. During the last 100 years, it has evolved from a Beaterio to a four-storey institution that is home to all Ritarians.
Academic development in the school is coupled with and strengthened by spiritual and emotional growth. Year 2007 marks a milestone as it celebrates its 100th foundation anniversary and commemorates 100 years of grace and service in the name of the Lord. This coincided with the formal visit of PAASCU officials last February 8-9, 2007. On May 18, 2007 the PAASCU Board of Directors informed the School Directress that its Basic Education Department has been granted initial Accreditation for a period of three years.
The success story of Saint Rita College can be credited to everyone who has been part of this community, most especially the selfless individuals who devoted time and talent to uphold the schoolâ€™s vision and mission. It is also a salute to the perseverance, commitment and determination of Mother Dionisia Mitas and Cecilia Rosa Talangpaz, the Foundresses of the Congregation of the Augustinian Recollect Sisters and attribute to their incessant supplications, the marvels that the Lord has wrought to the school.
The history of Saint Rita College will be incomplete without mentioning the inspiring maternal love of Our Lady of Carmel. The A.R. Congregation, so with Saint Rita College, came to a lovely existence because of her protective mantle under which the Foundresses served the Church. And, it is on the very spot where St. Rita College stands where Mother Dionisia and Cecilia started the first convent school of the Augustinian Recollect Sisters.
VIVA SAINT RITA COLLEGE, MANILA!