Graeson Pete and Silver Matthan

Meet the Guingguing Family from ICSC

March 25, 2024

Meet the Guingguing Family, their sons Graeson Pete and Silver Matthan attend Immaculate Conception School Cottonwood (ICSC). Graeson is in first grade and Silver is in preschool. Their mom, Jessa, shared why school choice is so important to their family.

From Jessa Guingguing:

My husband and I really have had the “American Dream” since we started our family, we want our kids to have better opportunities then we did. We migrated from the Philippines in December 2022, I was able to secure a job as a medical and surgical registered nurse at Verde Valley Medical Center. Luckily that meant that we could move our whole family to Arizona. The transition from a third world country has been very hard. We were financially ready to move, but it was still hard knowing that we wouldn’t have family nearby.

Our family is Catholic and we wanted to send our kids to a school that was faith based. Being new to the area, I researched school options in Cottonwood. We were very lucky when we found Immaculate Conception School Cottonwood (ICSC). The school is rooted in the Catholic religion, they will help teach our kids morals and values in line with our beliefs. I believe that this is a great foundation for their future. I love that my kids will be learning a value system and discipline not just as a person but with the help of learning about their religion at the same time. We have been guided with the help of Mr. and Mrs. Hernandez from the school through the process of applying for scholarships to be able to afford to send our kids to a private Catholic school. The Arizona Leadership Scholarship is a great help to our family so that we are able to give our kids this educational opportunity.

My boys love their school, their peers and their teachers. This school is caring and compassionate, which is like being with  family even though we are far away from our home country. Our boys have never felt that they are different, even culturally.  Graeson loves Math and his Reading has been enhanced with the help of his teacher. Silver just turned 4 years old, he is a great kid with a good character, he adores his brother and loves to go to school. He is very easy going, very cheerful and a sweet little one. His interest is on being a firefighter, policeman, basically a leader and kind hearted kid.

More about the boys from their teachers’ at ICSC:

“Graeson is a truly remarkable student. His love for God, passion for learning, outgoing nature, and kind heart make him an all-around amazing human.” Jylian Beery, 1st grade teacher

“Silver is so curious and has an incredible imagination. He loves to learn and is always so engaged when he is at school. We are so blessed to have his sunny personality in our classroom.” Jill Barteau, preschool director

About  Immaculate Conception Catholic School – Cottonwood:
Inspired by Roman Catholic tradition, Immaculate Conception Catholic School (ICCS) provides a Christ-centered environment, offering the highest quality academic education in the Verde Valley. By emulating the teachings of Jesus Christ, we prepare morally responsible leaders who think critically and value service within the community through a partnership with students, parents, parishioners, and staff.  Immaculate Conception Catholic School is determined to provide our stakeholders an educational and spiritual experience where we nurture the whole child by emulating the teachings of Jesus Christ. Our vision is to enable students to reach their highest potential spiritually and academically, so that they are readily equipped to carry out God’s calling in their lives. It is our desire that each student become a valuable, empathetic citizen, who will contribute love, service, and knowledge to their diverse world. We recognize parents as the primary educators of their children. With that in mind, our staff promotes student achievement with academic instruction that reflects current research and proven effective classroom practices. We strongly believe in creating a safe, loving, and comfortable learning environment that is inclusive of all learners. Our curriculum offers the highest quality academic education, promote critical thinking, stimulating intellectual curiosity, and challenging students to reach their full potential. Students benefit from small class sizes and attention given to learning at different levels. ICCS strives to develop morally responsible leaders who incorporate the love of God into decision-making, developing self-respect, respect for others, and academic integrity.  For more information about the school visit: