Kamehameha Schools Kapālama (KSK) was recently granted an accreditation term of seven years by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and the Hawai‘i Association of Independent Schools (HAIS) – the highest achievement attainable for member schools.
“This is a noteable accomplishment for KSK and shows that the KS Kapālama faculty and administration worked diligently and well together to accomplish this coveted term,” said Dr. Holoua Stender, KS’ executive vice president for Education.
The visiting committee from WASC and HAIS, who made their observations over a three-day period from March 4 – 9, 2017, required the campus to do a progress report and self-study in addition to the observation period. In the report by the visiting committee, recommendations and commendations were made for the campus.
KSK administration, faculty and staff were commended for their commitment to resources and facilities that create a wide-range of opportunities for its students. The report goes on to say “these [resources and facilities] are used throughout all three divisions of the campus to deepen opportunities for students, strengthen the breadth and quality of program, and engender a sense of pride and commitment to Ke Aliʻi Pauahi Bishop’s legacy.”
WASC is one of the six official academic bodies responsible for the accreditation of public and private universities, colleges, secondary and elementary schools in the country. Educational institutions seeking WASC accreditation are evaluated with rigor on their capacity and educational effectiveness. A maximum accreditation term enables and validates KS’ efforts to continue its vital work to increase the capability and wellbeing of native Hawaiians.
“It is a significant achievement for our campus to obtain a seven-year accreditation status,” said Debbie Lindsey, hope poʻokula (assistant Head of School) for KSK. “It is the highest achievement granted by WASC and HAIS – a validation and tribute to the amazing work our faculty and staff have accomplished.”
The campus was commended for “faculty and staff’s keen awareness of their shared responsibility to honor and perpetuate the original intent of Ke Aliʻi Bernice Pauahi Bishop’s will that created an educational system grounded in Hawaiian and Christian values.”
The committee also lauded KSK’s provision of significant financial aid to a substantial portion of the student body, providing access to excellent educational opportunities for native Hawaiian students who otherwise would not be able to access its education.
“Our kuleana is to continue to provide a world-class Hawaiian culture-based education for our haumāna,” added Stender. “With the loyal support of our faculty, staff, parents and alumni, KS will fulfill its vision of a thriving lāhui.”
The term of accreditation is for the period between July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2024.