2018 Graduates

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May, 20, 2018,  John Glenn Middle School, Bedford, MA

Iskwelahang Pilipino closed its 42nd year of operation with another heartwarming ceremony showcasing the Rondalla recital, dance performances from the annual NEFFA festival, Class presentations (“I am a Pilipino-American” by the Ilang-Ilang group, “Chikading” by Binhi class, “Nipa Hut” song by Sampa/Bonifacio group). The Senior presentations (“Ang Pagong at Matsing” paper cut story by Ceci Villasenor; “the Seniors” slide presentation by Donny Deking; and a “My Way” rendition by Parker Fisher) followed with an eclectic mix revealing their nostalgic presence at IP.

After the presentations, we honored six graduates: Lizzie Clarkson, Donny Deking, Parker FIsher, Jaenald Javier, Hollie Lane-Smith, Ceci Villasenor. They each roasted each other with touching introductions.

At the end of the ceremony, IP witnessed the “passing the baton” leadership.The community thanked Bebs Sipin for her service as Executive Director. She handed the proverbial “baton”, a symbolic clip board, to Myra Liwanag (an alum, mother, and wife of Paul Castro, another IP alum).

Of course behind every great woman is her man. We also thanked Jondi Sipin for his devotion to IP as the Lutuan volunteer teacher, the chef-BBQ master at Lowell and many other technical contributions to IP.

Salamat to all the volunteer teachers and staff who’s passion made IP another great year.

Congratulations and Mabuhay to all!


2017 Graduates

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May 14, 2017, Bedford Massachusetts, It was Mother’s Day, the Spring Nor’easter rains came down in buckets, but the annual closing ceremonies and IP Graduation show still  happened! An exciting IP Sunday at the John Glenn Middle School in Bedford, MA

We sent our best wishes to kuyas and ates: George Bailey, Carsyn Fisher, Janrey Javier, and Katrina Sipin as they leave IP’s home halls and into the bigger academic campuses  of Boston College (George), Fordham University (Carsyn), Umass Boston (Janrey) and Syracuse University (Katrina).

All the best to our seniors!

We will miss you.

Looking forward to seeing you in the summer (Lowell) and  winter (Pasko na naman) breaks.

Come home to us.


We’re 40 and We’re FABulous!

Bedford, MA, May 29, 2016, Bedford High School Auditorium.

IP turned 40. For the Anniversary celebration, IP mashed up contemporary American pop hits to traditional Filipino folk dances on the first half of the show. IP Rondalla also celebrated its 30th birthday with a Bicol Epic called, The Ibalon.

Photos by Charlie Castro and Patricia Yusah

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Barnes & Noble

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Burlington, MA

Barnes & Noble, the ultimate destination for book lovers (and more) will host Iskwelahang Pilipino (IP) at the Burlington store (98 Middlesex Turnpike, Burlington, MA- off route 128) for an afternoon of Philippines Music and dance. This fundraising effort is for the school’s 40th Anniversary celebration.
When you check out, please use the voucher ID  (11829249) at the register this Sunday, IP will get credit for the purchase. Win-win!

The IP children will perform with indigenous string instruments (Rondalla), sing popular-Taglish-themed songs and dance a few folk steps to the delight of book shoppers.

Bring the family, friends and music-lovers…shoppers too will enjoy the rhythm of Pilipino culture, Sunday, April 17, 2016 from 2-4pm.

The Book Fair voucher ID (11829249) can also be used online from April 17 through April 22, 2016. Simply enter the Bookfair ID when checking out online, IP will still get credit for the purchase.

Mabuhay ang IP!

B&N Flyer One

Coloring page


Manila’s multimedia artist, Kankan Ramos creates a beautiful illustration for Iskwelahang Pilipino. To help celebrate IP’s 40th birthday, Ms.Ramos puts together images and words that are significantly important to the community.



NEW school year starts Sunday, SEPTEMBER 20, 2015.
Registration for new and returning families start at 12noon at the Shawsheen Room (aka Cafeteria) at the Bedford Town Cebter.
An assembly/orientation for new parents will follow at 1pm.
Important announcements should not be missed as Iskwelahang Pilipino is celebrating its 40th Anniversary all throughout the year.

At 2pm, the families will gather with a meet and greet session on the second floor at the Union Room.
After merienda at the cafeteria, the children will have short class periods- an introduction to the volunteer teachers and staff.

Thank you for your interest and support!
See you on IP Sunday, September 20, 2015 at noon.
12 Mudge Way, Bedford MA 01730
Bedford Town Center

2015 Graduates say s’long!

May 17, 2015, Bedford, MA Five graduates said their goodbyes today at IP’s end-of-the-year ceremony at the John Glen Middle School auditorium in Bedford, MA. Bettina Aristorenas will work on her Engineering courses at Cornell University; JR Fadrigalan will also pursue engineering at Wentworth Institute of Technology; Gerry Paradela will go to UMass Lowell for his Physical Therapy degree; Nathan Rippin will study at Bryant University for his marketing degree; and Victoria Zuelke will concentrate on the bio-medical field and Mandarin studies at the University of Rhode Island. All graduates traveled the “Rondalla Rocks” 2013 tour in Manila and created a strong bond. We hope their memories will warm their hearts when they get homesick away from the IP Sundays. Good luck and Mabuhay!
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NEFFA 2015

Mansfield, MA The day/week turned out to be unusually cold for a late Spring week. The 45 degree temps did not hamper the spirits of our dancers who were hot to perform at the annual NEFFA festl This year’s repertoire included ‘Gaway-gaway’ (Ilang-ilang), ‘Sakuting’ (Sampaguita), ‘Pasikat sa bangko’ (Rizal) and ‘Tinikling’ (Bonifacio).

Majority of the Ilang-ilang cast were newbies- it was a joy to see them backstage waiting at the wings with anticipation and raring to get on stage. At the last minute, some of the children pitched in when we lacked clappers for Tinikling and dance partners for Sakuting. It was a proud moment for Tita Marijo, Tita Beth and Tita Patty to see how the older kids eagerly volunteered to be tapped on the last minute. What a team!

Everything turned out perfect. And the performers knew they nailed it. As Tita Michelle observed the last minute instructions at ‘green room’ were heeded…  “nakikinig pala” (they were listening). The Tinikling dancers showed precision at their finale; the Bangko dance was elegantly performed with no falls; the Sakuting dancers did not miss a beat and the Gaway girls and Shem hit it on cue for every step. With photos to show- they all smiled naturally with a gleam of pride and having so much fun. Bravo!

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Back in Boston after 31 years

September 20-22, 2014. President Benigno “P’Noy” Aquino III, was back in Boston for the weekend for a nostalgic visit. (He and his family lived in Newton, MA from 1980-1983). On Sunday, he had a whole day packed with various events lined up in his itinerary. It started with a lunch gathering with old family friends in Sudbury, Ma. After the private lunch, his convoy, which included several cabinet ministers and the security staff, proceeded to attend mass at the Parish of St. Ignatius of Loyola in Newton. The chuch was a stone’s throw away from his former residence. An estimated  crowd of 400 Pilipino Americans joined him for the Catholic service. He and the congregation then proceeded to the Robesham Auditorium at Boston College for his speech and to meet the Benigno and Cory Aquino scholars at BC. At a short reception thereafter, the President shook a few hands and posed for some “selfies”. At the end of the line, he saw the rondalla ensemble and gave them a quick wave- which sent an appreciative message of “I remember you guys!”. The rondalla played “Mabuhay” the official Presidential anthem to announce the entrance of the President at all public appearances (similiar to “Hail to the Chief” for the US President). On Monday, the President continued his hectic schedule with a visit to his old Commonwealth Avenue home before proceeding to the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.

President Aquino did tell the author during the reception that he remembers the command performance the Rondalla gave at the Malacanan Palace in July, 2013. He remembered that in spite of the sub-par acoustics at the Palace (referring to the low ceiling and floor), he enjoyed their numbers and was proud of the Filipino-Americans from Boston.

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IP joins Philippine Independence Day in Boston

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June 7, 2014- Boston City Hall Plaza, Boston, Massachusetts

It was a perfect day to fly the Philippine flag at Boston’s City Hall Plaza. The IP Rondalla troupe waited in queue for their turn to perform to a crowd of Pilipino residents in the New England area as well as passerbys walking through the Plaza and into the downtown crossing. Mabuhay ang Pilipino on this their 116 year of Independence.