Bicolano whiz kid bags gold in int’l math contest

By MA  LOTERTE

LEGAZPI CITY Errol John Suarez of the Bicol University Integrated Laboratory School (BU-ILS) has won one of the gold of the 136 medals and merit awards haul of the Philippine team in the just concluded 2010 Singapore International Mathematics Competition (SIMC).

In an e-mail to Bikol Reporter, Dr. Simon Chua, president of the Mathematics Trainers’ Guild (MTG) Philippines and head of the country’s delegation, said Suarez joined the team of  young Filipino mathematicians who placed second overall, edged by China which won a total of 282 medals, in the 10-nation contest held Aug. 6-10, 2010.

Suarez, a Grade 4 pupil of the BU-ILS has been earlier chosen from hundreds of qualifier from different schools nationwide, to represent the country in the said international math competitions.

The BU-ILS pupil is also the lone Bicolano named to the elite group of young Pinoy math wizards.

Suarez, at his age of nine, also made it to the national limelight in February last year following his fete as the youngest Kumon Math completer in the country.

The entire Philippine team has tallied 12 gold, 26 silver, 54 bronze medals and 44 merit awards or runner-up certificates in the competition.

MTG, an organization of math experts, trains Filipinos for math competitions abroad.

China bagged 39 gold medals in the SIMC. South Korea was third with eight, followed by Hong Kong (7), Taiwan (6), Indonesia (5), Malaysia (4), Thailand (3), host Singapore (2), and India, which failed to get any medal, said Chua.

A total of 92 elementary and 44 high school students represented the country in the SIMC.

Chua and other MTG officials commended the Filipino math wizards for “another job well done.” “They’re among the world’s best. No doubt about it,” said Chua.

This year, MTG wards have so far won 91 medals, including four golds, in four international math competitions – the 13th Hong Kong Primary Math World Contest, 2010 Korea International Math Competition, 51st Math Olympiad in Kazakhstan, and the 2010 Canadian Math Competition.

Chua noted that this year’s medal harvest increased compared to last year’s contest where the Filipino math wizards won 102 medals.

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