Ho'ala was probably the most ineffective school I ever went to. I learned practically nothing here at this school. It did not prepare me whatsoever going back to public school. Concepts taught at this school are not college preparatory at all, and yet students are pushed through the grades with this education. Unless your kids have extreme learning issues, this is NOT the school for you.
If you have just a regular kid and are planning to send him/her here, this is NOT the place for you. Work here is is simply too easy and inadequate. Remember, just because your kids are getting A's doesn't mean they're learning anything. Also, the whole grading system is very unorganized. They don't even provide a syllabus at the beginning.
There is something very special going on at this learning institution. My granddaughter started Kindergarten in the middle of the first semester when all the other students were familiar with the rules and routine. Her classmates volunteered to be her "helper" to assist her. An older student from another class offered to be her big sister also to help. It is really endearing to watch the older students help the younger ones. All of the faculty and staff knows each and every child and is always available for them. They are all 100% committed to the Hoala philosophy of respect, responsibility resourcefulness. They also offer a Lego Club, Chess Club, Hula, Piano, Taiko Drum right on campus. Spanish is required K -12! Tina the fine arts teacher is amazing. She introduces all mediums of art while teaching Art History! They have gymnastics as part of their PhysEd There isn't a need for the school to have the expense of their own library. The kids visit the public library which is right across the street. It's a good opportunity to get out and walk and get some fresh air! If you believe that it takes a village to raise a child. Hoala is that and so much more!
Ho ala School far exceeded our expectations. My daughter attended Ho ala School from K-4th grade. We recently underwent a military move to the mainland and my daughter started 5th grade, middle school, in a premier school district. We received her first progress report at her new school and she received all A s and a B. I then went to a parent/teacher conference and was told by the teachers that they don t know why I came in for a conference- She s doing GREAT! I explained our recent move and one teacher stated How can she possibly be doing so well coming from Hawaii? I nodded and explained that this is why I chose to send her to Ho ala School. Hoala's investment in each child's development and well-being has allowed my daughter to thrive at her new school! She was definitely well prepared and ahead of the curve for this huge middle school transition due to Hoala's emphasis on respect, responsibility, responsiveness and resourcefulness. Ho'ala's emphasis on character education enriches the WHOLE child! She was not only prepared academically but given life skills through their character education program that are tools she will take with her forever.
At age 10 our daughter is excited about school and has come to value her education. She has become an introspective person who can act upon her feelings of empathy in the absence of coercion or self-centered conformity. Parent involvement in any school is vital to student success as well as to the success of the school community. We wish for every child and their family the opportunity of a Hoala education that has brightened every aspect of our daily lives and changed how we live in the world. The academics are updated and solid.
This school is the best kept secret on Oahu. It doesn't look much from the inside, but what goes on inside, is amazing. At this school, the child not only learns all the academics, but he's also taught how to be the best person he can be. And he learns how to be part of a community. This is the second year for my son at Hoala, and he loves it so much he wants to stay there until the last possible moment. All the teachers know all the kids and all the kids know each other. The older kids help the younger kids. It's just a fantastic place. If you're looking for a school that nurtures your child and allows them to go at their own pace ( whether that's accelerated, or not ) this is the place. I have nothing but good things to say about Hoala.
Ho'ala School is like an amazing hole-in-the-wall restaurant; once you find it, you wonder where it's been your whole life. I am a Ho'ala alumni (1st grade thru 12th) and so grateful for all the opportunities the school gave me, tiny as it may be. Where else can you go to receive an education (that fully prepared me & took me through college graduation), and have amazing experiences with your whole school instead of just your class? Scuba certification as part of a Marine Science course? Did it. Community Service trips to learn the importance of giving back and how much a small school can impact a community? Ho'ala does that, and more. Students in combined classes are something of the future, and something I think is helpful; it teaches a child that they are part of a group, that everyone working together in a respectful and responsible manner equals more efficient, intelligent and patient children. The school's principal was a former Ho'ala teacher and former Ho'ala parent, which I think adds to the sense of community and the well-oiled machine that is Ho'ala. I am grateful to my parents for sending me to Ho'ala and I continue to carry the values of Ho'ala with me into adulthood.
Ho`ala is truly a special place. It teaches everyone that is a part of the school the true meaning of responsibility. The character education that takes place at the school is something that can be transcended not only in your school career but in all future relationships that you have in life. It has taught me (a graduate and student since 1st grade) to be respectful of others and to put myself in others shoes before jumping to conclusions. Just an overall great place to receive more than just a college prep education!
This is a FANTASTIC school. It is focused on developing the entire child and teaches to multiple intelligences. All you have to do is look at the high school students who have come through the program: they are confident, articulate, intelligent and creative. This is the best school on the island.