By Anna Valmero
QUEZON CITY, METRO MANILA – Henry Jefferson Morco of Chiang Kai Shek College bagged first place in this year’s Philippine Mathematical Olympiad (PMO).
Morco is one of the country’s representative and bronze medalist in last year’s International Mathematical Olympiad (IMO), and helped the country in its largest medal haul at the competition to date.
Morco received P15,000 as cash prize after Besting 3,596 high school students from around the country,. Placing second and taking home P10,000 is Mikaela Angelina Uy of Saint Jude Catholic School while Kenneth Co of Philippine Science High School – Main Campus finished third and got a P5,000 cash prize.
The three winners, together with 17 other national finalists, will undergo training this summer to determine the Philippine contingent to the 53rd IMO to be held in Mar de Plata, Argentina this July.
After determining the best students at PMO, the bigger challenge is utilizing the gains of the competition to uplift the quality of basic education in the country, said Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI) director Dr. Filma Brawner.
“We know that given a very good foundation, we will have a large pool of students and math enthusiasts who will immerse themselves in math exercises and activities,” she said.
As the nation prepares for the implementation of the K-12 curriculum, the Department of Education should take a closer look at the Mathematics framework for basic education prepared by DOST SEI and Philippine Council for Mathematics Teacher Education, said Brawner.
The framework focused on fundamental ideas of numbers and number concepts, measurement, geometry, probability, data analysis, patterns, functions and algebra “to help students value the relevance of math in daily life.”
The PMO is the country’s oldest and most challenging mathematics competition and is being organized by the Mathematical Society of the Philippines (MSP) and DOST SEI.
The Math Olympiad boosts the mandate of DOST SEI to create a pool of future scientists and engineers by encouraging them to pursue science and technology careers under the agency’s scholarship program.
(Photo by DOST SEI)
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