Speaking as a civilian official, the writer found educational work among [the Filipinos] constantly interesting and fascinating; and the Filipinos whom he met at his office and in the country districts were polite and easy in their manners, somewhat reserved on first acquaintance, although never cringing, fluent talkers, ready with promises of cooperation, and in fact gentlemen. Teachers and superintendents who lived in the towns with these same genial natives reported that few of them showed executive ability, and some were obstinately inefficient and inactive. When requested to make repairs on school buildings or to get school furniture, municipal officials are very ready with promises; but as has been well said, the Filipino never says no but never says yes. When asked for information, he studies you and is inclined to give the answer that he thinks you desire.
Fred W. Atkinson
First General Superintendent of Education in the Philippine Islands, 1905
I found this in the UP Main Library’s Filipiniana section. I believe that this quote speaks the truth, even for the present.