Determined not to be a victim of bullying and to put an end to his ignorance, Joseph Alba is back in Vicmico Elementary School in Manapla, Negros Occidental as a grade 1 pupil.
Believing that it isn't too late for him to learn, Alba went back to school, knowing that it would soon be easier for him to read locations, street signs, and directions.
As he sat in a room filled with children, Alba was reminded of the days when he used to skip classes.
Alba stopped school when his parents died. He was in third grade at that time. Soon, he found himself working in a sugar cane farm.
He quit his job three years ago since he could no longer bear the heat at his age.
Alba works as a helper for the Pasingca family, where he also stays.
Before Alba went back to school, Susan Pasingca had observed that whenever her Grade 2 granddaughter was studying, Alba often sat beside her, observing what she was doing.She said she saw Alba's interest to learn, prompting them to take him to school.
The family bought uniforms for Alba and provides him an allowance of P5 to P10 a day.
Alba's teacher, Fria Laguda, said he is a fast learner. He is considered an inspiration to the kids and those who are losing hope.
Alba plans to finish just sixth grade and teach children about the importance of reading.