Dr. Segundo M. Infantado, co founder of the National Teachers College, is recognized today among the country’s educators. This will-deserved renown came to him by the difficult route of life-long hard work. He started in youth as a classroom teacher in the public school. Not many years later he became a principal and served as such in two primary schools of Manila – the San Sebastian and Tondo primary schools. In 1916, he was appointed supervising teacher for the Division of Bulacan. This was a signal of honor, for in those days, supervisors of the public schools were all drawn from among American personnel in the Department of Instruction. Therefore, Dr. Infantado has the distinction of being one of the first Filipino supervisors in the country.
Subsequently, Dr. Infantado was appointed Division Superintendent of Romblon, a position he relinquished almost as once to be able to work on his own in private education. He first worked as the Registrar of the National Academy. In this capacity, he helped to organize that institution into a university.
Then together with Mrs. Flora A. Ylagan, and the late Dr. Pedro Ylagan, Mr. Infantado founded the National Teachers College, specifically to train teachers for the country’s many schools. From that time to the present, Dr. Infantado’s guiding influence has never really been absent from the affairs of this institution, first as its Executive Secretary; then as Vice Chancellor, succeeding the much loved and revered first Chancellor, Dr. Jose P. Laurel.
In addition to his occupancy of positions in the administrative set-up of the National Teachers College, Dr. Infantado has served the country well and faithfully in varied capacities. For a time, he was a member of the National Council of Education. Befor ethe second World War, he served as the first Director of the Office of Adult Education. During the occupation years, he was appointed as Director of the Bureau of Public Instruction, After Liberation, he served for some years as Educational Consultant of the Board of National Education. He served the country with his vast educational experience and knowhow in the capacity of Educational Consultant of the National Teachers College, the institution he helped to found for the express purpose of preparing teachers for the youth of the land.
Dr. Segundo M. Infantado may, therefore, be best remembered for his contributions to the educational betterment of our people. First he instituted the adult education program now being carried out throughout the Philippines. He helped to organize one of the country’s most prestigious universities. He helped found the only private institution in our country that is devoted solely for teacher training. He initiated the community school idea and pursued it consistently through publications issued by the National Teachers College. He advocated long before anyone else, the establishment of a municipal high school in very town. He was instrumental in getting the Parent-Teacher Association movement officially recognized by the government. An throughout his varied educational career, he pounded away on his sound educational ideas by means of speeches, articles, and books which he published from time to time.
Published and unbulished works of Dr. Infantado included the following:
- Handbook for Adult Education, 1937
- Handbook for Character Training, 1949
- Guide for Student Teachers, 1949
- Student Council Handbook, 1956
- Key to Success, 1956
- Suggested Programs for Home Room Guidance, 1957
- Education Ideas and Ideals, 1957
- Tinig ng Kabataang Pilipino, 1957
- Parent Teacher Association Manual, 1966
His extensive travels in the USA, in Europe, and in other parts of the world only served to heighten his nationalism. They helped to crystallize his ambition to weld his countrymen into an enduring nation with pride in their cultural heritage and with a sense of destiny for the future of the country.
To this end, he always stressed nationalism as a motivating force, a catalytic substance to tie together what is learned in the school so that the eventful products (trained hands, hearts, and brains) may be harnessed for the country’s progress.
He has put this philosophy into practical use in his personal life. All his children by his wife, Maria Fernandez Valte, were working professionals. They served our people in various ways. Angelica, M.D., as a skilled Obstetrician; Augusto M.D., a physician, Leonardo, LL.B, once a chairman of the Board of Trustees of the National Teachers College; Lygia, a BS Pharmacy graduate, who once served NTC as an Instructor and later as Building Superintendent; Remedios, BS HE graduate, who also served NTC as an Instructor and Assistant CAshier, Emilia, A.A., and Segundo Jr. who served as Vice President and Registrar of NTC and Member of the Board of Trustees. Dr. Segundo M. Infantado, returned to his Creator on July 11, 1969.