Frequently Asked Questions

General

School starts at 7:10 and runs until 2:25 Monday through Friday. After school programs end at 4:30.

This varies according to grade level, but on average no more than 25:1.

Faith Academy is governed by a self-perpetuating board of trustees composed of 15 voting members from the missionary community.

Due to the nature of rotating home assignments and shorter careers in overseas education, we have about 25% turnover in staff each year. This makes accommodating special needs more challenging. Please make the registrar aware of the special needs your child has, and we will discuss together how to proceed.

There is an entrance exam upon application for all students coming from homes or countries where English is not the main language. All ELL students are tested in both written and oral activities to determine their level of English. Only students who pass the ELL entry level testing are admitted to Faith Academy.

Each division handles their ELL students differently.  It is suggested that you talk with the divisional principal to find out what is currently being offered for ELL students.

Penny Lane, Valley Golf, Cainta on the edge of Metro Manila.

Click here for a map.

Yes, we do have vans that run to various parts of the city depending on the number of students in those areas. There is an additional fee for this service.

Serving

All teachers are required to maintain a current credential with a government body in their home country or hold a current certification with the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI). The school will assist with the process and cost of maintaining a credential. Staff members are encouraged to use RightNow Media for continuing education units (CEUs) in Bible. This is a requirement for renewing a certificate with ACSI. The school also subscribes to ASCD Activate for those who need to earn education CEUs. Every teacher will complete a Christian philosophy of education course within their first three years. Faith Academy follows the requirements set by ASCI for this. For questions and assistance, please contact the Director of Teaching and Learning.

In order to work in a non-teaching role at Faith Academy, you need to be qualified and/or experienced in your area of application.

Being an evangelical school for children of Christian workers, Faith Academy considers only personnel who subscribe to the school’s foundational statements.

No. To keep tuition costs low for those serving throughout Southeast Asia, FA does not pay salaries or provide any financial compensation to personnel. Faith personnel are all affiliated with and receive financial support through sending organizations.

Our personnel come to Faith Academy through a number of different sending organizations. If you need to select a sending organization, we recommend you review this list and research and/or contact them to decide which is a good fit for you.

Check with your sending organization for guidance or seminars they may offer. Faith Academy may also be able to provide some resources upon request.

Faith Academy offers New Staff Orientation to help acclimate you to serving here. Many mission agencies offer a more intensive pre-field orientation. If your mission agency does not, we recommend you consider the Association for Christian Schools International (ACSI) orientation for those who will be working with Third Culture Kids (TCKs). Check their website for ACSI’s  information.

It is recommended that you enter the country as a tourist and within the first 30 days of your arrival, Faith Academy visa department will start the process of applying for your new 47(a)2 visa.  You will receive information from our visa coordinator prior to your arrival in the country.

Several months before you begin your assignment, you will be contacted by the Faith Academy ITS Department with instructions on how to access your FA email address. Your supervisor and others on staff will then begin using this new address to communicate with you.

Each classroom has a Windows based computer equipped to use an LCD projector to display digital content for large group viewing. Non-teaching staff will also be provided with a desktop computer, if needed. If you are coming and prefer to use your own laptop or tablet for projection in the classroom, that is fine. However, please be aware that Faith does not provide the adapters you may need to connect your preferred device to our LCD projectors; the increasing numbers of devices and possible adapters makes this impossible to meet everyone’s needs. As you prepare to come serve, please plan ahead and purchase / bring the adapters you need to connect your preferred device to a VGA connection coming from our LCD projectors.

Once you have been accepted as a staff member, you will need to fill out an application for your school-aged child(ren) (preschool, elementary, middle or high school) by contacting the Registrar.

Please note: Upon acceptance to serve at Faith Academy, your children will not automatically be enrolled.

Filipinos are extremely gracious and non-confrontational. Time is not a primary value. Filipinos are people-oriented and event-oriented, not schedule-oriented.

The nation is mostly Roman Catholic with a strong god-consciousness as seen in posters, public transport, etc.

Upon arrival, you will be given a book entitled, Mabuhay, that will provide information to help you navigate your new life at Faith Academy, in Manila, and in the Philippines. If you would like to read ahead, please contact the HR Department and it will be sent to you in an e-book format.

Your mission organization will determine how much you will need to raise in order to live in Manila.

Check with your mission organization to see if they will assist you in finding housing.

Most of our personnel rent condominium apartments or single family homes close to Faith Academy; these come both furnished and unfurnished. Faith Academy does manage the lease of some apartments close to the campus; they are available on a first come/first serve basis. The HR office also keeps an ongoing list of available housing. 

Some personnel will be looking for people to house-sit for them while they are on home assignment (furlough) for six months to one year. This allows newcomers to get an idea of what things are like and where they may want to live for long-term. The HR office will also be able to give you information about this.

The Manila area of the Philippines has three seasons: Hot, Rainy, and Cool. The humidity level averages 77%.

The hot season is typically March through May and the temperatures are in the lower to mid 30 Celsius range (90 to 100 degrees F).

The rainy season is June through November. There are monsoon type rains and occasional typhoons. Temperatures range from 20-30 degrees Celsius (80 to 90 degrees F).

The cool season is December through mid February. It is typically a little cooler and drier with temperatures in the upper 20 degrees Celsius (70 to 80 degrees F).

The Philippines is a tropical country; it is hot and humid. You will mainly want modest summer clothing. If you’re planning to purchase clothing in the Philippines, be aware that sizes run small here. Clothing that is equivalent to US size Large or larger can be difficult to find in local stores.

It is recommended that you budget for a vehicle; this should be discussed with your sending organization. Faith Academy is not easily accessible by public transportation, although some personnel choose to take public or arrange for rides with others.

Yes, you will need a local driver’s license. However, your driver’s license from your home country will be valid for the first 90 days in the country. You may apply for a Filipino drivers license as long as your current driver’s license is still valid. You may be asked to take the written and/or driving test.

The currency in the Philippines is the Philippine Peso. 

First, contact your mission. They may have a procedure in place for you to get cash and process bills, but it is recommended that you bring cash with you that can be exchanged at local locations until you get things set up at the bank.

Credit cards such as Visa, Amex, and Mastercard are accepted at most restaurants and shopping centers, although there are a few places that only accept locally issued credit cards.

Faith Academy will accept credit cards, US dollars (USD), and USD checks to pay school bills. FA will exchange USD to Philippine Pesos (PHP) to a maximum of $150 per day.

Electricity is 220v in the Philippines. Please confirm that all your electronic devices are able to handle 220 volts if you are coming from a country that has different voltage.

Board Games – You will find some here but they are more expensive and more limited. You can sometimes buy second hand ones through the missionary community.

Christmas Ornaments – If you have a few favorites, bring them to help you feel at home. Christmas is a big celebration here and decorations are available and even start going up in September!

Classroom Resources – Bring posters to decorate and use as classroom tools, particularly if you are teaching MS and HS.

Computer and Small Electronics – probably cheaper in your home country; remember that they need to be 220V or interchangeable.

Home Decorations – If it makes it feel like home to have a special wall hanging or photos, bring them.

School Supplies – Such things like pocket folders and 8 1/2×11 lined notebook paper are hard to find here; most other office supplies can be found.

Sheets and Linens – These are sold locally, however, sheets can be brought from your home country if you are particular in the thread weight or fabric.

Special Books – We do have bookstores here with reasonable prices, but not all books are available. If you have special ones, particularly for teaching, bring them.

Toiletries – Deodorants are available, but some personnel find they are not as strong as the ones in their home countries and not all brands are available. Toothpaste and shampoo of many varieties and brands are available. Many personal products made in the Philippines will have whiteners in them. In terms of feminine products, tampons are not always available and, if found, they are expensive and only come in small quantities. Other feminine products are readily available.

Toys – There are toy stores here, but name brand items like Fisher Price, Lego, etc. are more expensive.

Vitamins – some can be found here, but are much more expensive.

With the airlines restricting luggage more these days, you may be wondering how to bring your things. Many of our personnel use a balikbayan box service. You can ship this box, with no weight limit, door to door for one flat rate. Balikbayan is the Filipino term for visiting or returning to the Philippines after a period of living in another country. There are a number of companies that offer this service throughout the USA and Canada. Forex is one of the more popular companies.

You can have it shipped to our physical address:

Your Name
℅ Faith Academy 
Penny Lane Street
Valley Golf Subd., San Juan
Cainta, Rizal 1900
Philippines

Phone: 632-8651-7100

Keeping in touch has never been easier or cheaper! Everyone uses a cell phone in the Philippines; Manila is the texting capital of the world! You can purchase inexpensive devices and phone plans or choose to purchase pay as you go cards.

Note: WiFi and cell service can be unpredictable throughout the region, especially during typhoon season. While Faith’s WiFi is usually reliable, your family and friends outside of the Philippines should be made aware that you may not be reachable at all times. 

Competent physicians and dentists are available locally; Manila also has many well-equipped hospitals. Healthcare of expats in the Philippines is affordable and good quality in and around Manila.

Most medicines are available at reasonable prices. If you have a medicine you must take, ask someone local before you come to check if it is available.

Vitamins can be more expensive. If you prefer a certain brand or type, we recommend you bring some to hold you over until you are able to find out cost and availability in the Philippines.

Immunization: While the Philippines does not require any vaccinations prior to travel here, we encourage you to check out both the CDC and WHO websites before you leave your home country to see their recommendations. Passport Health also has a webpage that gives updated/current vaccine information for travel to the Philippines. We also encourage you to talk to your primary healthcare provider to discuss your options based on your own health situation.

Applying

Our application process opens in November each year for the next school year. Applications are accepted until April 15. Applications submitted after that date are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

The application process is the first step in becoming a student at Faith Academy. An application must be completed and school records submitted. English Language testing will take place during this process, if needed. The application, along with testing scores and school records, will be reviewed by the administration. If an application is approved, they will be sent a letter of acceptance.

The enrollment process follows the application process if a student has received a letter of acceptance. In order to guarantee a place in the school, this process must be completed. There are medical forms, child safety, and policy forms to be completed. Once they are all completed, a student will be considered enrolled for the next school year.

Each year, every current student must complete the re-enrollment process. If a student does not re-enroll they will not be registered for the next school year. If a student will be gone for part of the year, they still need to complete the online forms.

Those who will be gone for any length of time but plan to return to FA should notify the registrar to avoid unnecessary fees and disruptions during transition.

A standardized test measures the test taker’s achievement by using grade-level percentile rankings. Examples of tests that we accept are Stanford, Terra Nova, WIDA, Woodcock-Johnson, and CEM Achievement Test (Filipinos only).

This is the non-academic fee which goes toward the running and upkeep of the school. This is an annual fee.

Uniforms, rental of musical instruments, travel, transportation, and boarding are also additional costs.

We do not offer academic scholarships for students. We do have an application for financial assistance for those who are under our general tuition rates.

English Language testing is scheduled once an application, school records, and the application fee are submitted. The testing is done at Faith Academy or online.

Boarding

Faith Academy primarily ministers to missionary families; therefore, students of missionaries will be given priority. Missions providing staff at Faith Academy are also given priority, as well as siblings of the current or past boarders. Other students not in any of the above categories will be accepted as space is available.

The provision of boarding is for those families who reside outside of the Metro Manila area and are not on one of the Faith Academy van routes. Normally, children whose parents are on furlough/home assignment are not accepted in the boarding homes. They may be admitted to Faith Academy as day students until their parents return to the field, as long as the school is made aware of specific guardians. However, some special exceptions for admission into boarding may be made on a case by case basis.

The majority of our boarders are high school students. Middle school students in grades 7 or 8 may be accepted on a case-by-case basis. We do not accept anyone below grade 7.

Each boarding home is unique. We have one all-girls’ home, one all-boys’ home, and one home that can be co-ed if numbers require. The students live together as a large family in each home, working together, eating together, and caring for each other. 

The ratio of each dorm is one adult to every ten children, including the children of the boarding home parents. Each boarding home has 12-20 students who share the 5 bedrooms prepared for them. 

We have students from many different cultures, but bonding together as a multi-cultural family takes time and adjustment. It is important that students come with a willingness to be flexible and to learn how to adapt to new friends, schedules, responsibilities, and cultures. It is not easy to be separated from family, but our goal is that by providing a home that is loving and nurturing, and with parents’ prayers and support, we can help their children achieve their fullest potential.

Due to the group living dynamic, students with special needs, learning challenges, medical, emotional, or behavioral issues may struggle living in a boarding home. It is important that parents disclose this information in the application process in order to help make the best decision for the student.

A student will be allowed to drive only when the following has been submitted:

  1. A signed letter from the parent to accept full responsibility and liability in case of an accident.
  2. The student’s valid Philippine driver’s license.
  3. A letter of consent from the owner of the vehicle/motorcycle.

We understand that boarding students are somewhat limited in their transportation options. In some circumstances Boarding Home Parents do not feel comfortable allowing students to drive a car or ride with a student driver. Please be aware that Boarding Home Parents reserve the right to exercise individual discretion in decisions related to transportation.

The student’s parents may give their specific permissions for dating, however, the following are our boarding guidelines for dating:

  1. No dating in Middle School.
  2. Grade 9 may group date (3 or more couples)
  3. Grade 10 may double date (2 couples)
  4. Grade 11 & 12 may single date.
  5. Grade 12 may date a person not attending FA on a case by case basis with parental input.
  6. Dating outings must be approved by boarding parents.
  7. No dating couples may reside in the same home.

Parents may give their specific permissions, however, students in boarding at Faith Academy are not permitted to watch or attend ANY TYPE of “R” rated movie. We are aware that ratings are not always consistent, therefore while your child is under our care the boarding home parents will have the final say on movie approval.

Internet access that is purely social and unrelated to school work is limited during off-school hours. Devices must be kept in common areas.