BRIEF HISTORY OF LA SALLE GREEN HILLS
THE FOUNDER, ST JOHN BAPTIST DE LA SALLE
The history of La Salle Green Hills started more than three hundred years ago in France when a French priest, Jean Baptiste de La Salle, gave up high social and ecclesiastical position and family wealth to dedicate himself to the neglected youth of his day by establishing an institute of religious teachers.
- 1661, St. John Baptist de La Salle was born in Rheims, France.
- May 1684, St La Salle founded the Fratres Scholarum Christianarum (FSC) or Institute of the Brothers of Christian Schools whose purpose was to give Christian Education to children especially the children of the artisans and the poor.
- 1719, death of John Baptist de La Salle
- 1900, canonization of St La Salle
- 1950, St La Salle was proclaimed Patron of all Teachers.
Today, there are around 6,000 Christian Brothers in more than 80 countries teaching and managing schools. In the Philippines, they are known as De La Salle Brothers.
DE LA SALLE BROTHERS IN THE PHILIPPINES
March 1911, nine brothers from Marseilles, France arrived in Manila upon the invitation of the Archbishop of Manila, to establish a college. This school was named De la Salle College (now De La Salle University), and was located in Paco, Manila. In 1921, the school was moved to Taft Avenue where it is presently located.
LA SALLE GREEN HILLS
1958-1968: Formative Years
- June 1959, the school opened its doors to two preparatory sections and one section each for the Grade 1 and 2 levels. Brother Alphonsus Bloemen, FSC was the first Director.
- February 1961, Brother Celba John, FSC, the last of the pioneer Brothers who came to the Philippines in 1912 broke the ground for the first permanent school building.
- August 1964, five years after its founding, LSGH opened its doors to high school students. Brother Dominic Aquinas, FSC who was the grade school principal at that time was appointed concurrent High School Principal. In the same year, the newly constructed grade school building was blessed.
- 1967, the construction of St. Benilde Hall was started. It was completed in 1969. Rising prominently on campus, this hall was a fitting memorial to St. Benilde (Peter Romancon), a holy Lasallian Brother who led a life of piety and charity dedicated to the education of the marginalized youth.
- 1968 saw the first batch of students graduating from the high school. They were known as the Primus batch. This group was made up of Grade 6 students from De La Salle College in Taft Avenue, Manila who were transferred to LSGH to continue their high school education since the high school department in De La Salle College Manila was being phased out, and the first batch of grade school graduates of LSGH.
1969-1979: Development Era
- November 1973, the High School underwent its first formal accreditation by the Philippine Accrediting Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU).
- March 1974, the Grade School was granted its formal PAASCU accreditation. The following school year, Dr. Estrella Castañeda, AFSC became the first lay principal of the Grade School.
- 1978 the Adult Night High School (ANHS) providing evening classes for the underprivileged adults, 18 years old and above. The free five-year terminal high school program has been designed to provide the students with basic skills needed for productive and gainful work anchored on Christian values.
1980-1990: Growth and Expansion
This period focused on strengthening the high school curricular offerings and at the same time addressing the varied needs and abilities of the students through the Special Tracking System (STS). This curricular scheme combines the academic set-up of the tracking system and the flexible schedule of the modular system.
- 1982, in the Grade School, the Special Pull-Out Program (SPOP) for the academically gifted was introduced in the Grade School. A year after, Kindergarten One was introduced to further strengthen the pre-school program.
- 1985, the High School implemented the IB program which prepared students for the IB Certificate exams. This was discontinued in 1989.
- 1986, the school’s first institutional reach-out for social concern was initiated. This program brought students of the public schools, residents of depressed barangays and other communities. 1984 & 1986, the school’s St Benilde Hall became the headquarters of the National Movement for Free Elections (NAMFREL) Operation Quick Count which helped in the restoration of constitutional democracy in the country.
- 1988, Mrs. Maria T. Pilapil was appointed High School Principal, the first lay Principal of the high school.
1990-TODAY: Infrastructure Expansion, Academic Innovations, Accreditation Upgrade
In 1995, the new high school building was inaugurated and name in honor of St. Mutien Marie, FSC, a Christian Brother.
Further developments in the school’s facilities were the new St. La Salle building for the Grade School, the local area networking of the whole campus, the upgrading of the Br. Gilbert Cotter football field, the construction of the Fr. Martinez Activity Center, and the air-conditioning of all the High School classrooms. A study hall was constructed attached to the gym and was named in honor of Mr. Cesar A. Cruz, a former high school Assistant Principal.
As a hallmark of academic excellence, the school has been introducing innovations and new programs, like the Learner Centered-Learning Environment from grade school to high school. With the introduction and use of Information and Communication Technology in learning, most of the classroom activities have become more interactive. The students are encouraged to participate actively in classroom discussions, stimulated to think critically and analytically, and were taught the value of working with others through collaborative projects and activities that develop and sharpen their 21st century skills.
Realizing the global focus on Asia as the new century’s growth area, and the emergence of China as an economic powerhouse, learning the Mandarin language was introduced as an enrichment program 12 years ago to all grade levels in both grade school and high school. It was such a popular program that by school year 2012-2013, Mandarin was offered as an elective in 1st Year High School. During the school year 2014-2015, Mandarin became an elective in the grade school starting with Grade 3.
Improvement was also introduced in the evaluation of a student’s progress through a portfolio system. This system collects student outputs from Kindergarten until they graduate from high school. Each year, parents are invited to come to view and discuss the portfolios of their children with their teachers. In this way, the parents acquire a better appreciation of their child’s development through their growth years.
2008, Level III Re-Accredited Status was granted by the Federation of Accrediting Agencies of the Philippines (FAAP). This makes the Grade School Department of La Salle Green Hills the first elementary school in the Philippines being granted such honor.
The Grade School Department has just been granted another five (5)-year re-accreditation by the PAASCU. The Grade School and High School Departments have always been granted 5 to 7 year-accreditation status by the Philippine Accrediting Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU) per visit.
The Future Is Brighter
Being a school committed and dedicated to develop responsible citizens and future leaders, it will carry on its mission of forming Christian gentlemen who live the gospel by touching their hearts, educating their minds and transforming their lives. It will continue to uphold the legacy of St. John Baptist de La Salle.