The morning of March 13, 2020 would have been just another ordinary day at Office of the President if it were not for the cheerful group of 17 children visiting from AWAK ECE center . The Honorable Vice President, Yoshiro George may not have been aware at first that he was literally in for a real treat after he had welcomed and thanked everyone with the group for taking the time to pay a visit to the Office of the President. As protocol would have it, the Vice President was the next appropriate authority figure in the Office of the President bestowed with the honor and privilege to receive the little guests and their entourage in the absence of the President.
Since the ECE children of Awak are littlest of minors, they were escorted by 5 adults who were charged to make their long awaited visit to the highest office in the FSM a reality. Judy Kostaka was their overall supervisor for their Early Learning Program which was said to later include a visit to the Pohnpei Weather Station as noted in their agenda. In the group, two teachers, Mayuleen Edgar and Resio Aron, were the chaperons present to keep the group in line. Two additional staff members, Rafaila Obispo, a cook and Danis Ramirez, the driver were joined by a handful of enthusiastic parents to lend their support.
In his welcoming remarks, Vice President George expressed his utmost thanks to ECE children and their entourage for their visit. He also acknowledged the woven baskets of gifts containing fresh local produce and green coconuts which were brought in for the President. Secretary Kalwin Kephas of the National Department of Education and support staff par take in the formalities expounding further on the roles and responsibilities of the national government with respect Vice President George’s short briefing on to the Executive, Legislative, and Judiciary. NDOE staff members on hand to assist with the welcoming event are as follows: Mario S. Abello, ECE coordinator, Cynthia Saimon, ECE-SPED Coordinator, and Joyleen Sienes, Scholarship Coordinator.
After the lead teacher explained the purpose of the visit, the preschool children of AWAK ECE entertained everyone in attendance with two childhood songs expressing their appreciation for the visit and showcasing their abilities with the use of their growing bodies and minds. The program became more amusing for the adults in the room when the children started a question and answer session with the Vice President George. A lot of interesting questions were aired. One student inquired about the number of children the Vice President has. Some friendly debate ensued between the students on the claim that the Vice President is of Pohnpei descent from the humble village of Paies.
One thing was certain, lots of cognitive activity was taking place in the room and loads of laughter were abound. Next, a Career Round was conducted where each of the ECE students would share the profession he or she would like to be in when they grow up. The professions of Policemen, doctors, teachers, cooks, and tailors were resounded followed by claps of approval of the small crowd. Through this sharing, Students were mindful that they one day could become the next President or Vice President of the FSM. At the end of the day, these children must return to their homes as they came but the Vice President Yosiwo George had reserved a special treat for his little guests . As soon as the Awak preschoolers exited the President’s hall way, they were struck in awe to find packets of sweets, snacks, and drinks waiting for them to take home. The President Office had begun the day with a special treat by the Awak ECE center, it is only fair that one good treat is returned to another, especially a Presidential treat.