MANILA, MARCH 21, 2011
 (STAR) By Delon Porcalla - [Photo is loading... President Aquino poses with nephew Joshua during the commencement exercises for the grade school department of the Multiple Intelligence School held at the UP Film Center in Diliman, Quezon City yesterday.]

MANILA, Philippines - President Aquino yesterday graced the graduation ceremonies of his nephew Joshua, and was very thankful to the Multiple Intelligence International School in Quezon City for significantly improving the status of the eldest son of his youngest sister Kris.

“Of course, we are very proud that Josh is graduating. I’m sure my mother is looking so fondly on my nephew’s graduation and I would like to thank all of the faculty; all of the teachers who really helped so much to improve him,” he said.

In an interview with GMA-7, Kris, a popular TV talk show host said Josh, 15 and a special child, graduated at the intermediate level.

Kris told close friend John Lapus that prior to his MI exposure, Josh could not even say a word.

It was only when she enrolled him in this school that Josh finally knew how to communicate, and learned a lot in cooking, including baking.

Aquino didn’t read the speech prepared for him by his staff.

“I hope you don’t mind if I do not read the speech for today, if I just speak directly from the heart,” he said during the graduation ceremonies held at the UP Film Center in UP Diliman.

“Today is really an auspicious day for our graduates, they have worked hard to get here. But I’m sure in the coming days, they will realize that this achievement was not done on their merits alone but on the combined efforts of their parents and also those of their teachers who have dedicated so much to making sure that they achieve their highest potentials,” he said.

“In effect, that is the only message that I would like to impart today, the key to reaching where you would want to go is having a focus on the other rather than the self,” the chief executive added.

“With that focus, nothing is impossible. It’s only a matter of time to achieve all of our dreams, so when our graduates march today and henceforth into higher levels of learning, you’re assured, your government is behind you, ready to support you,” Aquino said.


Kris Aquino says Philip Salvador is not invited to their son Josh’s graduation 3/19/2011 10:55 PM by: Rachelle Siazon

Without any trace of bitterness, Kris Aquino told the local press that Philip Salvador (photo at left) is not coming to their son Josh’s graduation since he has never been involved in raising their child.

As Kris mentioned in her previous interviews, Josh was only three years old when she and Philip broke up. “Hindi ko siya in-invite kasi hindi naman na talaga siya involved sa life ni Josh. And honestly, that’s why kay James, super ine-effort ko na ‘wag kaming mag-fight kasi it’s so important for a father to be involved. Siguro kay Ipe (Philip), too much water has gone under the bridge and siguro nahiya din siya dahil 100 percent of the financial responsibility akin, so mahirap na to build that relationship,” said Kris during the press con of Fiesta Spaghetti at Forbes Park last March 17.

Despite the lack of a father figure in his life, Kris was grateful because Josh is surrounded by people who truly care for him. “Hindi ko talaga alam [kung kinukumusta ba ni Ipe si Josh]. Siguro kasi from the time that my mom was alive—to my siblings, to my brother-in-laws, yung uncle and aunt sa side ng mom ko, my relatives—they’ve really made it a point na punuan kung ano mang ang pagkukulang sa life ni Josh. So siguro idagdag mo na d’yan si Lui (Andrada), si Sweet, yung support system namin sobrang solid, so siguro hindi na naghahanap si Josh ng more.”

And if there’s one person she really wanted to be there at Josh’s graduation, it’s President Noynoy Aquino who’s the closest father figure Josh has had. “Late ko na nasabi kay P-Noy, Tuesday ko lang nasabi na, ‘Noy, can you free your schedule kasi sobrang maha-happy si Josh kung makakapunta ka.’ And then sabi niya, ‘Sure!’”

Kris was really proud because Josh’s progress in school has been very successful and that he’s actually moving up to a higher level of learning. “In his school kasi, there are special kids and there are regular kids, so sinabay sila sa mga grade 6 kids na maggra-graduate. Tapos after this kasi meron kaming bagong pinuntahan na mga therapists, bagong mga life coach, bagong mga doctor na magtra-transition kami from the school environment pupunta na si Josh sa life skills. Meaning, mahilig talaga siya mag-bake so merong chef na mag-aaral si Josh doon tapos mahilig siya sa music so magpa-piano siya.”

In fact, Josh baked some chewy chocolate brownies for Kris and cooked lumpiang shanghai during a cooking demo in his school. “Ang na-try ko recently na masarap, he baked brownies, it was really good and moist. They showed me in his school yung video na nagluluto siya from scratch ng lumpiang shanghai, tacos also, kasi hilig niya talaga mga food. Sa music nag-perform na siya, kahit mga complicated pieces kaya na niya e. I have no musical skills whatsoever, ‘di ko nga alam kung saan nanggaling e. As in kasi sa program nila he was second to the last. Yung last pang-show na yung level ng performance tapos kay Josh very close dun. O, in fairness nanay kasi ako,” she cheerfully related.

Kris was really proud of Josh’s accomplishments in school, but she didn’t forget to give credit to all the people who patiently equipped her son with the skills he needed to survive in life. “Ako kasi, with all the difficulty sa learning, the fact na madami siyang naa-achieve, it’s a testament to the patience and dedication na binigay lahat ng teacher niya. And secondly, I have to give credit to Yaya A (Ana), she's been there since birth, hindi na siya kinasal talaga so talagang love, love na parang as a second mom talaga. And credit din to Josh himself kasi yung perseverance talaga, nagtiyaga din naman talaga siya. Kasi yung piano nag-start siya color-coded e, until he learned it na talaga. Tapos ngayon sabi ko, ‘Ay ikakarir natin ‘yan!’”

At the end of the interview, Kris revealed that she plans to purchase a car for Josh as a graduation/birthday gift to him. “I’m going to buy him a car na diesel. E ang mahal-mahal na ng gasolina ngayon. Yun kasi ang hinihingi niya kapag 16 years old na siya. Kasi you know, hindi niya siguro ma-express na nagseselos siya, pero siyempre may selos na forever na lang yung little brother niya ang napapansin. So gusto ko lang naman mag-compensate,” she added


HISTORY: The Multiple Intelligence International School & Child's Place Preschool was set up in 1996 with the vision of providing learning environments that are truly child-centered. It aimed to open schools that welcome all learners, recognize and understand the individual differences among children, & work with the learner in bringing out their potentials.

The Child's Place preschool and the M.I. International School are the first learning institutions in the country that base their approach on the principles of the multiple intelligence framework of Dr. Howard Gardner, a well-renowned cognitive psychologist from Harvard University.

The MI approach, which is currently being implemented in the US and other countries and backed by recent research on how children learn, is truly responsive to the needs of the 21st Century.

This framework prepares the Filipino child to be creative, critical, and divergent thinkers who are able to really 'think outside the box.' In our schools, we recognize that by teaching for understanding, our students are encouraged to problem-solve, to hone their skills, and to develop their individual strengths.

All these are qualities that will allow students to ride the tide of the Information Age. Since we understand that every child learns in many ways and each has his own interests and needs, we provide children with multiple access or entry points to a concept through their different intelligences or “smarts.”

We also do our best not only to provide a holistic curriculum but also to practice “differentiated teaching” inside our classrooms because we understand the differences in interests, needs, and learning styles among the learners.


It is now more than a dozen years since the Multiple Intelligence International School was launched; congratulations on your thriving enterprise over that period. I had the privilege of visiting the school a few years ago and was impressed by the energy, motivation, and thoughtfulness exhibited by students, staff, and parents.

Of the many "MI schools" that I have visited over the years, the Manila-based school stands out in terms of the care with which the program has been conceptualized and carried through. I am in regular touch with Founding Director Joy Abaquin and recently had the opportunity in New York to watch her interact with two dozen MI educators from all over the world.

All attendees were appropriately impressed by Joy's deep understanding of the key ideas of MI and her boundless energy in leading the school and producing future leaders for the Philippines and the world. I send you my warmest greetings and best wishes for many more years as a successful, pioneering educational institution.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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