Star-Bulletin Features

Monday, October 22, 2001

[ Hawaii's Schools ]


Starting early
to save lives

Kamehameha aims to make
physical fitness a lifelong habit

Yes, we’re Hawaiian and much, much more

Kamehameha Schools
By the numbers
You asked
About this page
Important Dates

By Ka'imi Crowell
Ka Mo'i sports editor

STATISTICALLY, Hawaiians have a higher risk of developing heart disease, cancer, diabetes, asthma and hypertension/obesity and other health problems.

That's why Kamehameha launched an aggressive physical education program in 1971, the goal of which is to "establish an improved level of fitness ... of all students," said P.E. department head Don Metzger.

The program is also designed to get students into the exercise habit. "We're trying to set the stage for what will go on for the rest of their lives," he said.

Starting in the first semester of ninth grade, students are required to attend a class three times a week to learn about the physiology of the body.

"It teaches us about our body," said freshman Pili Keala, "so that if we end up throwing up, we know why: because of running too hard."

Upper-class students dive into the pool as part of
their lifeguard training class.

The second semester of freshman year consists of training for a 10-kilometer run or a 2-kilometer swim in May.

In 10th grade, students train twice weekly for the sophomore culminating event: a biathlon made up of an 800-meter swim and a 4-mile run. The other three days, students choose a sport to participate in, such as bowling, racquetball or fencing.

The upperclassmen are on an "honor" system that gives a specified number of points for aerobic activities outside of class. Instead of going to class every day, students check in weekly. Junior Keoni Ruth said that this program is helpful because "we probably won't (exercise) on our own unless we play sports."

As a culminating event, juniors and seniors are required to complete at least one community event such as the Turkey 2-K Swim or the Kailua 10-K Beach Run.

Other elective classes associated with the P.E. program include lifeguarding, skin and scuba diving and athletic training classes.

Aside from this standard program, there is a Health Promotion Education (HPE) program that specializes in weight management. According to HPE teacher Theone Chock, "It's not so much about losing weight ... but building self-esteem and self-confidence."

The HPE curriculum is based on the "Shape Down" program from the University of California at San Francisco Medical School. Students in this program have class work once weekly and do group workouts for the remainder of the week.

Senior Le'a Schaumburg has seen the effects of the overall program over her years at Kamehameha, and said that it "reminds us that academics are not the only important thing."

And, said Metzger, when the day is over, if the students "realize that they've made some real positive contributions to their own health, then we've been successful in what we're trying to do."

Yes, we’re Hawaiian and
much, much more

By Elias Samonte
Ka Mo'i features editor

Looking in from the outside, people in the community commonly refer to Kamehameha students as simply "The Hawaiian Bunch." Although the school promotes a connection to our Hawaiian heritage, there is more to being at Kamehameha than being Hawaiian.

To detect the breadth of diversity among the more than 1,800 students in the high school, one must look beyond the "Hawaiian kids" label.


Though they are all at least part Hawaiian, the students of
Kamehameha Schools "represent just about every ethnicity
in this world," says Wayne Chang, head of admissions.

Ethnic backgrounds: Sure, the students at Kamehameha are all descendants of Hawaiian ancestors, but numerous other ethnicities also are represented on the Kapalama campus. According to Wayne Chang, head of admissions, "We represent just about every ethnicity in this world."

"Even though this school is based upon being Hawaiian," said senior Bridgette Sholtis, "you get a good understanding of what other cultures are like." Besides being Hawaiian, Sholtis is also Chinese, Korean and Portuguese.

Commuter students: Most private-school students deal with location and transportation issues that those in public schools rarely face. Unlike public high schools, which place most students into schools based on where they live, Kamehameha and other private institutions incorporate students from all of Oahu. The number of students selected per area is "set by the Hawaiian and part-Hawaiian population per district," said Chang.

For Sholtis, school days begin early. "I live in Wai'anae, so I need to wake up at 4:30 in the morning to beat the traffic and get to school on time."

"It's hard to spend time with friends because we live so far apart," said sophomore Jennifer Bradford. "The only real time you get to spend with them is during the summer."

Boarding students: For students from off island, the school offers a boarding program to all willing to live on campus. The 443 high-school boarders represent almost 25 percent of the student body, with people from the mainland and nearly every Hawaiian island, including some from the outskirts of O'ahu.

"Boarding is good because you constantly have people your own age around you," said Kyle Peru, a junior from Kïlauea, Kaua'i. "You get a sense of what they want to do (after high school) and what you may want to follow."

Exchanges: In addition to the school's boarding program, Kamehameha also offers exchange programs. Students have the opportunity to spend a semester in either New Mexico or New Zealand, where they experience a culture completely diverse from our Hawaiian traditions.

"It was basically a culture shock," said senior Vernon Quiocho, who attended St. Stephens School in New Zealand during his sophomore year. "(The Maori's) protocols were very different, and we had a hard time communicating with each other."

Quiocho did gain a lot of experience during his trip, and he was able to observe similarities and differences between Hawaiian and Maori heritage. "The Maori people are close to their culture, and they really feel strongly about it. It was interesting to see that (Maori) are a minority in their own land, just like Hawaiians are."

Kamehameha Schools

Address: 1887 Makuakane St., Honolulu, HI 96817
Founders: Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop and Charles Reed Bishop
Founded: 1887 for boys and 1894 for girls
High school principal: Anthony J. Ramos, Hawaii State Principal of the Year for 2001-02
School yearbook: Ka Na'i Aupuni
Other Kamehameha campuses: At Pukalani, Maui, and Kea'au, Hawai'i (both are adding grades annually and will eventually be K-12)
Mascot: Warriors
Colors: Blue and white
Class colors:
2002: Gray
2003: Pink
2004: Yellow
2005: Red

By the numbers

600: Number of acres occupied by the Kapalama campus (largest private school in the nation)
$1,362: Tuition for day students
$2,680: Tuition for boarders
1,801: High school students
150: High school faculty
13 to 1: Student-teacher ratio
1891: First graduating class
1891: Year oldest building was built (Bishop Hall, located at Bishop Museum)
1889: First newspaper issue
18: School-sponsored clubs (other groups meet informally)
1: Doctor
3: Full-time nurses
3: Part-time nurses
50: Students needing crutches every year
499: Available musical instruments

31: Sports programs
4: Gyms
4: Playing fields
817: Male student athletes in grades 9-12
581: Female student athletes

444: Average class size (9-12)
1 in 6: Ratio of applicants who are accepted as students
7,500: Students who apply each year
25: School-owned buses (all have Hawaiian names)
2: School-owned garbage trucks (both are named after Hawaiian winds)
27: Transportation employees
1,400: Children who catch the school bus
3,500: Meals served daily (grades 7-12)
1: Ton of rice prepared a week
600: Glazed donuts prepared for a boarder breakfast

80: Stairs in Midkiff Learning Center
4: Floors in Midkiff Center
70,000: Books in Midkiff Center

97: Percentage of students going to college or university (based on Class of 2001)
81: Percentage going to a four-year school
52: Percentage going to the mainland for post-secondary education

10: Boarder-occupied dormitories (grades 9-12)
10: Out-of-state students
218: From Hawai'i Island
93: Maui
75: Kaua'i
22: Moloka'i
5: Lana'i
1: Ni'ihau
22: O'ahu
2: Exchange

You asked

What human behavior do you find most irritating? Why?

Christopher Kaeck
"When people use hand motions, because it's distracting."

Tracy Bryant
"When people stare at you, because it just makes me mad."

Sara Andrade
"When people have their hair in their face in front of their eyes, because it hides their true beauty."

John Pa Kennedy
"I hate it when people burp, because it's like farts coming out of your mouth."

Katie-Ann Saiki
"Conceit, because half of the time the ones who are conceited have nothing to be conceited about."

Erin Dye
"Ignorance, because if you don't open your mind to different views, life will be very boring."

Alex Stachel
"People who act stupid, because I don't like people who try to attract attention."

Kiel Nash
"When people borrow stuff and don't give it back, because it is my stuff!"

Compiled by Mahina Tuteur, Wailani Tanaka and Mei Linn Park

About this page

Each week, Hawaii's teenage reporters and photographers will tell us about their high school. This week's school is Kamehameha.

Newspaper: Ka Mo'i

Editors: Holly Coleman and Michelle Lyman

Faculty adviser: Elizabeth Truesdell

Next week: Kailua High

Important Dates

Oct. 27: Senior Lu'au

Dec. 7-8: Christmas Concert

Dec. 19: Bernice Pauahi Bishop Founder's Day

March 2: ATP Ho'olaule'a (at Bishop Museum)

March 22: Song Contest at Blaisdell Center

May 26: Graduation

Do It Electric
Click for online
calendars and events.

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