Batch 86 Gives back to Deaf students

Begun in 1974 as a non-profit educational foundation, the Southeast Asian Institute for the Deaf (SAID) is recognized as a forerunner in Total Communication.  The dream and dedication of a group of parents, educators of the deaf from Gallaudet University, deaf individuals and friends that started the program, has expanded and today challenges the deaf community to an even more far-reaching dream.

SAID stands as an expression of the benevolence of MIRIAM COLLEGE to allocate space for a school that has struggled for 33 years to find a “place in the sun”. In June 2007, SAID was integrated into the Miriam College system.  It now operates as one of the basic academic units of Miriam College.  MC-SAID is considered the first school for the deaf in the Southeast Asia to adopt the Total Communication philosophy in educating deaf children. The ultimate goal of SAID (now known as MC-SAID) is the mainstreaming of its graduates into the regular college and eventually in the working community.  The school aims to develop the maximum potential of the deaf child for a full and happy life.  Miriam College has helped realize this objective by offering a Mainstreamed College Program for deaf high school graduates.  The program was conceived as a stepping stone in concretizing the plans for providing higher educational opportunities for the deaf.  The motivating philosophy underlying this program of integration is the simple premise that children who are deaf have the right to dignity, individuality, uniqueness and to an opportunity to become fully participating citizens within their cultures, to the degree permitted by their abilities and capacities.


MC-SAID is a special school designed to develop deaf Filipinos who:
as committed and responsible Christians, live their moral principles with conviction while respecting the beliefs and values of others.
as special learners, strive for academic, social, cultural, and vocational competence and can respond intelligently and creatively to the challenges or a changing world despite their handicap.
as members of society, use their knowledge and skills to help their fellowmen attain a better quality of life.

Philosophy of Education

Being ever mindful that a deaf child’s handicap is language deprivation, MC-SAID has accepted the Total Communication philosophy, a multilevel approach to the education of deaf children and is now an accepted practice in many of the educational programs for the deaf.  The philosophy implies the right of the deaf child to all forms of communication available in order that the child may develop goals of language competence and scholastic success.

Schools that accept Total Communication focus on the child’s abilities rather than his disabilities.  Adherence to this philosophy means a constant endeavor to communicate with the child in a way that he can understand.  Early exposure to signing doesn’t mean that access to speech and lipreading should be closed to the young deaf child as a foundation for subsequent linguistic growth and also as input for cognitive development.

The full commitment of MC-SAID to the Total Communication philosophy and approach to learning for the young deaf Filipino has survived.  It opened the minds and hearts of these young deaf children and their parents to new means of communication essential for normal psycho-social development.


Miriam College was granted government recognition by the Department of Education for the Pre-Elementary, Elementary and Secondary Special Education Courses for the Hearing-Impaired in 2009. 

At MC- SAID, special learning areas such as Speech, Auditory Training, Rhythm and Sign Language which are essential components in the education of a deaf child are integrated in the curriculum.

Programs and Services

Academic Program from Preschool to High School              
Speech Program
Guidance and Counseling Program
Sign Language Classes
Faculty and Staff Development Program
Christian Formation Program
Scholarship Program
Tutorial Program

Scholarship Program for Students who are Deaf

It is recognized in all countries that education of students with disabilities, specially in the tertiary level, is probably the most expensive.  In the future, it is hoped that some financial support will be seen as a government and institutional responsibility and a deaf student’s right.

Tuition and school fees have kept MC-SAID in continued operation for the past years; however, these fees depend largely on the fluctuating size of enrolment.  The present financial situation in the Philippines makes it more difficult for the school to accommodate children from low socio-economic status.

In response to one of the stumbling blocks of the Basic Education program and the Mainstreamed College Program for deaf students which has remained to be a major problem to this day—a channel of steady support for the disadvantaged deaf students to help them complete their Elementary, Secondary and Tertiary Courses (where deaf students concern themselves not only with cost of tuition fee but with interpreting and note-taking fees as well), Miriam College has developed a scholarship program for deaf students.

The Scholarship Program for the Deaf aims to support three (3) deserving deaf students in Miriam College to earn an Associate in Computer technology by subsidizing the cost of tuition and support services and ten (10) deserving deaf students enrolled in the Elementary and Secondary Programs at MC-SAID by partially subsidizing the cost of tuition and school fees.

The Program is based on the philosophy that every deaf child regardless of financial status should be given an opportunity for education and a chance to develop his potentials in order to prepare him for life in a world of work.  It is centered in the belief that all students with disabilities deserve a quality education that challenges them and prepares them for a world more respecting and accommodating of differences.

Most Frequently Asked Questions

1.      If you are deaf, are you mute?

No.  Deafness refers to the inability to hear and understand speech and other sounds.  It does not affect organs for speech and intelligence.  Deaf students are deaf; they are not ‘deaf and mute’; neither are they ‘deaf and dumb’.

2.      Can a hearing aid help them communicate?

To some extent, yes, but let us keep in mind that hearing aids amplify sound but they do not affect the ability to process sound.

3.       Are there no other assistance you can tap to help finance the scholarship?

Currently, we have individuals and organizations providing support to the scholarship program.  Assistance provided is done on an annual basis.  Any decrease in donations to the scholarship program is certainly a challenge to our work for the deaf children.

4.      How do we choose the scholars? Criteria of selection

There are operational guidelines set by the Scholarship Committee to be able to qualify for scholarship. 

For the College, the Scholarship Program is managed by the Miriam College Scholarship Committee chaired by the Associate Dean for Student affairs (ADSA) assisted by the Program Coordinator for Learners with Special Needs.  The committee receives and deliberates on applications and monitors the scholarship program.
For MC-SAID, the program is managed by the Scholarship Committee, composed of the Principal, Assistance Principal and the Guidance Counselor.  The Committee screens student-applicants and deliberates over their applications.  Once approved, the grantees are monitored by the Office of Student affairs throughout the year and are given guidance on their academic performance.
The funds are administered by Miriam College.

5.      Do you have students who graduated and became successful in their field of endeavor?

MC-SAID’s track record speaks of gainfully employed graduates in the different fields, among them in education, culinary arts, private and government agencies.

Our graduates also excel in the different colleges and universities.  About four have graduated with honors at Gallaudet University in Washington, DC (the only university for the deaf in the world), made it to the dean’s list at Miriam College and most recently, an MC-SAID graduate became the first deaf cum laude of UP’s College of Fine Arts.

6.      What is the level of competence of deaf students vs those who are in regular schools?  
 Are they able to cope with the main stream?

Given the appropriate support services that deaf students need (ex. interpreter, notetaker, tutors), deaf students have greater chance to cope with the mainstream.

The Department of Education uses the same academic curricula for hearing and deaf students, with the inclusion of special subjects such as speech, rhythm, and auditory training.  Though modifications are done for the deaf, the same minimum learning competencies are required for promotion of both groups of learners.  The main difference in educating the deaf lies in their basic problem of communication.  Due to the deaf’s inability to hear, serious language difficulties are encountered; thus, affecting their level of competence as compared to students who do not have hearing impairment. 

7.       What kind of scholarship does the institution need? (types of scholarship merit, 
              academic, financial and others)

            Currently, the only type of support we provide for our students is financial assistance. 
            We are hoping that we could provide academic scholarship later on.

8.       Why are we supporting deaf students, not the ‘regular scholars of Miriam College or students from MAE?

Being in a developing country, deaf children from poor families are doubly marginalized (poverty and disability) and do not have access to quality education; thus, limiting their development and potential to rise beyond the handicap brought about by their disabilities. Education is a step to facilitate the deaf person’s integration in our society and to becoming empowered members of the community.   By providing assistance to these students, we have provided them equal chance for learning and empowerment through education.

Miriam College Bank Accounts:

Peso Account
Account Name:           Miriam College Foundation, Inc.
Bank Name:                 Bank of the Philippine Islands
Branch:                          Katipunan Branch
Account No:                 3081-1112-42

USD Account
Account Name:           Miriam College Foundation, Inc.
Bank Name:                 Bank of the Philippine Islands
Branch:                          Katipunan Branch
Account No:                 3084-0375-31
Swift Code:                   BOPIPHMM

Reminder:  Have the depositor fax his/her bank validated deposit slip to 426-01-71 with his/her/organization’s/company/s name so Official Receipt can be requested by MC-SAID.

Carol C. Ui

Contact Details
Katipunan Road, Loyola Heights
Quezon City 1108, Philippines
Telephones: (+632) 426-0171 or 925-7257


Miriam College-Southeast Asian Institute for the Deaf

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