SJA History


THIS PAGE IS DEDICATED to SJA History which we can, and should, share to our family and friends. Despite the so-called bobbing ‘standards’ of the school, there is much more to St. John’s Academy we should know and be proud of. Click on the links to read more.


St. John’s Academy in San Juan, Rizal (now San Juan City, Metro Manila) was founded in 1930. The street where the campus is located was called Valenzuela Street (named after Dr. Pio Valenzuela, a physician and Katipunero).

The street was renamed Jose Gil Street in honor of the late Army colonel and son of legendary and beloved English teacher Concepcion Marquez-Gil, one of the school’s co-founders.

FOUNDERS: The Marquez Sisters, one of whom was Paz Marquez-Benitez, pioneer female modern short story writer in English.The LOYALTY SONG was set to music by Col. Antonio R Buenaventura, National Artist for Music (1988).

Dr. Potenciano D. Baccay Jr† [’57] was a pioneer in the field of Nephrology and Hemodialysis in the 1960s and served as president of the Philippine Society of Nephrology from 1978-1980. He is also recognized by the UERMM from where he took medicine as among its 50 Most Outstanding Achievers for his contributions to the field of medicine and research in the Philippines.
Dr. Natividad J. Munárriz [’40], an educator, is a founding member of the Philippine Guidance and Personnel Association, Inc..
Dr. Ma. Lourdes Arellano-Carandang [’60], psychologist, educator and book author, whose Filipino Children Under Stress: Family Dynamics and Therapy won the 1988 Catholic Press Award for Best Book, (English category), was cited as the 1994 National Social Scientist by the Philippine Social Science Council.
 Letizia Roxas-Constantino [’38], nationalist, educator and book author, together with her husband, the historian Renato Constantino, established the Foundation for Nationalist Studies in 1976, now known as The Constantino Foundation of which she is Chairperson.
 Jesus Ejercito [’56], film producer (as Jesse M. Ejercito), past president of the Philippine Motion Picture Producers Association and former Executive-Director and Deputy-Director General of the Film Academy of the Philippines (FAP). He established the film production outfits Crown Seven Films (1976) and Seven Star Productins (1981).
 George Ejercito [’57], FAMAS award-winning film actor (as George Estregan or George Estregan, Sr).
 Pio De Castro III† [’59], recognized for his achievements and contributions to Philippine film as actor, director, writer and notably as film critic and reviewer by the school during SJA’s 60th anniversary in 1990. He was one of the founders of the Manunuri ng Pelikulang Pilipino, the society of Filipino film critics that awards the annual Gawad Urian for cinematic excellence.
 Multi-awarded sculptor Agnes Arellano [’66], recipient of SJA’s Outstanding Alumna Award in the field of Art in 1990. | |


It would be interesting to know who designed the SJA logo and what the elements represent, or why the official SJA color is green (what shade of green is it, really?).

If you think there are errors to this entry or would simply like to contribute to SJA’s history, please feel free to fill out the form below:

Page entries updated 1-11.20.07 | 2-05.26.13

31 thoughts on “SJA History

  1. wow! i don’t believe i’ve seen a more dedicated batch to sja than your batch.
    i, too, am an alumna of sja batch 93 but i don’t think we have built a website such as yours.
    it makes me reminisce about our dear old alma mater.
    once a st. johnite, always a st. johnite.

  2. Hello, Charo C.

    Thank you for stopping by SJA’82 and your kind remarks. We are celebrating our 25th this year, and a site such as this does help bring the batchmates in touch. Here’s hoping for Batch ’93’s site to soon be online and all the best to you!

    – K Villa for SJA’82

  3. I will start by saying “once a johnite, always a johnite”. This is a nice hubbub you started on the internet where johnites (specifically batch ’82) can visit and gather information about things, past and present. I like that idea – Batch ’60’ site online. You initiated it and it could just spread like wild fire once word gets around. I graduated in 1960 and have not been back since then. I would certainly appreciate it if you can give me an e-mail address or a contact person at the ST JOHN’S ACADEMY ALUMNI ASSOCIATION where I can write and keep abreast of the latest goings-on, particulary the class of 1960. Thanks! . God Bless! and more power to you and the rest of batch ’82.

    Ned Quemuel, SJA’60

  4. Hey Nestor!
    Just read your note. I thought I recognized your name, especially when you mentioned SJA ’60. It has been soooooo long ago, 47 years, to be exact, since I last saw you (graduation day). I’m glad to read about a co-graduate, finally. I, too, have not been back to SJA since I left the Philippines in 1970. But it’s good to hear there’s someone else from the 1960 group..There were only 17 of us who graduated from SJA in 1960. Regards.

  5. I am curious about the founders of your school, who were the seven Marquez sisters? I know of Paz Marquez Benitez being the author of Dead Stars, is Natividad Marquez, the poet, one of the seven Marquez sisters? Thanks.

  6. Hello, ella. Thanks for leaving a comment. Yes, Natividad Marquez, who wrote “The Sampaguita”, was one of them.

    The Sampaguita
    By Natividad Marquez

    Little sampaguita,
    With the wandering eye,
    Did a tiny fairy
    Drop you where you lie?

    In the witching hour
    Of a tropic night,
    Did a careless moonbeam
    Leave you in its flight?

    The others were:

    Socorro Savallero
    Dolores Carballo
    Carolina Rivera
    Concepcion Gil
    (not necessarily in that order)

  7. Can somebody give me the number of st. john and how much is the tuition fee coz i’m looking for a school for my 7 year old child. Is this an international school.

  8. Hi,
    I am the President of the SJA Alumni Association of North America and I have organized two School Reunions in Las Vegas in 2005 and 2007. The attendees were any students of SJA regardless of whether they graduated there or not. The purpose of these reunions is to reunite all of us who share the same sentiments of our childhood and educational days.

    I am looking for some of my classmates and I hope someone can give me a phone number or e-mail address. I am having a small gathering at my house in Chino, California on August 2nd. where we will also discuss the 2009 School Reunion. If anyone know the following classmates of mine, can you please assist me in getting in touch with them? They are:
    1. Florencia “Flora” Roque – Bautista
    2. Virginia “Virgie” Parales – Solis
    3. Annabella “Bella” Alcasid

    Thank You! Long Live the Memories of Old St. John’s, the School We Loved so Dear!

    Appreciate it,
    Marcia Bundalian-Stephen
    (909) 628-2843
    marciagenoveva (at) verizon (dot) net





  9. how come st. john’s academy depriving my daughter’s right to study only because her parents are not married?!!!!!!

  10. I started in St. Johns as a kindergarten and graduated high school batch 1978. A big part of my life has been spent in St. Johns and I will forever cherished the loving and caring memories dear St. Johns has given me. My fondest memories with my mentors and classmates will always be in my heart. Long LIVE ST. JOHN’S THE SCHOOL WE LOVE SO DEAR!!!!! HOPE I COULD SEE ALL YOU GUYS AGAIN!!!

    Dominador (domeng) Manalo

  11. I attended St. John’s for one year only – in 1974 as a Freshman HS student. I remember Liza Mendoza, Natalie (wish I could remember her last name) and 2 other girls whose names I really cannot recall but whose faces are etched in my mind. Had so much fun that one year though – I still remember them with fondness. I moved to the States in 1979 and lost all touch with them. Does anyone have yearbook pictures they can post?

  12. Hello Guys. I was also at SJA 7th Grade ’77-’78 only and I am not sure if you can still remember me. But I do recall some of you – adelaida, riza, kambal (annamarie/rosemarie), evelyn kong, bong, steve, louie , gerry, bayani, salvador. I also remember Viking Villaluz , but he is not yet in your group.
    I enjoyed reading your posts and no doubt Steve/Mike you were my classmates in 7th grade.
    Nice to see you all.

  13. Hello once again. I can’t believe it’s been almost 3 yrs since I’ve left a comment here. Glad to share that I have had the chance to get in touch w more people from my batch thru facebook since then. Batch 93 is planning a reunion at the end of this year sponsored by alexander abad to be held at the schoolgrounds. Kudos to all Johnites!

  14. Hi Charo,
    Yes, been three years hasn’t it? Glad to know you’ve reconnected that much and that you still get to drop by this site. Thanks again for posting!


  15. I still remember our grade 7 days kasi na kick out ako hehehe,my close friends were paul moran,steve eva and jay tantoco (yata yun).regis was our best basketball player at section mendel ba yun coz i was at section plato! guys who still remember me ,pls email me at

  16. hi cleofe,i do remember you way back 1977 section plato. you were so thin but very sweet.nice of you to remember my name kahit na kick out ako ni mr javier hehehe,this is jose luis roa (louie)our adviser if im not mistaken was miss manalili at that time! emeil mo ako ha

  17. Thank you for including my late father, Potenciano “Mike” Baccay Jr., in SJA’s History. Going 26 years since his untimely death in 1985, I find continuing comfort in the knowledge that he is still fondly remembered by others outside of our family. More power to SJA, and may your fine institution continue to equip our young students not only with the tools to become successful professionals, but more importantly God centered values to make them well rounded, charitable and responsible adults.

    • Hello, Peter,

      What an honor to have Dr. Baccay’s family drop by and leave a comment on our pages.

      Surely his contributions to medicine and the benefits these have on countless patients are legacies a St. Johnite must look to for inspiration and uphold.

      Thank you for your comment.


  18. Hi, so nice to find this blog again. (Actually, I had seen it many years ago and got in touch with Marcia.) Anyway, I came across this site again today; and let me answer 2 things:

    1. Who designed the SJA (atomic) logo? Another site says Herman Lazo (sometime supposedly in 1957) and when I was grade 5. Without my knowing that he had gone to SJA, I know that Herman later worked as a Graphic Arts supervisor at the new ABC-CBN studios in QC from 1969 until it was dissolved by Martial law in 1973.

    2. The 7 Marquez sisters…in no order were: Paz Benitez, Socorro Olivera, Concepcion Gil, Dolores Carballo (the wretched, unhappy one), Carolina Rivera, one who married a Licuanan, and the youngest one, the unwed Isabel. THey had 5 brothers…2 doctors (one of them was a Charlie); and Manuel Marquez, the banker.

    Hope to meet some of you again soon…

    Myles (Louis) Garcia
    Grad, Grade 7, 1961

  19. I am an indian residing in UAE, I know about this school from my friend. Her daughter was studying there and she was one of the best student . Last year she passed away. I would like to hand over a ever rolling trophy to this school for the best student in spelling contest in memory of her. Is that possible?. Any one you can help me in this regard ? The value of the trophy will be not less than 25,000 pesos. Please advise

    • Hello,
      This is K Villa (SJA ’82) I am the site creator and administrator. Thank you very much for dropping by and leaving a comment. Have you visited the SJA site

      I will try my best to get in touch with the School Administrator and forward them your concern.

      Much appreciated.

  20. Pingback: Lesson Plan in English III | ischoolslasconia

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