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Kauhale ʻŌiwi o Puʻukapu

KAUHALE = Transforming Indigenous Education



Built on a vision shared by grassroots educators from the Hawaiian community of Waimea, on principles and practices of our Hawaiian ancestors, and on academically rigorous methods of teaching and evaluation, Kauhale is a place for and a philosophical approach to learning.  As guided by community elders, Kauhale shall look and feel Hawaiian, honor Hawaiian values, take care of the people, and sustain the land.  Centered in Waimea, we envision Kauhale growing into the premier institution in the Hawaiian Islands teaching the Pedagogy of Aloha, the academically rigorous, culturally-driven model of education that KALO employs in all of its programs.  Kauhale will also be a movement throughout the islands that supports charters schools delivering culturally focused education and that disseminates best practices in educating Hawaiʻi’s most vulnerable children.


Kauhale ‘Ōiwi o Pu’ukapu is Hawai’i‘s first community-designed and controlled intergenerational learning destination located on 30 acres of Department of Hawaiian Home Lands at Pu’ukapu, Waimea. The goal of this and future kauhale, situated in cultural kīpuka throughout Hawai’i, is to initiate native community sustainability and economic development and bring about community governance and self-determination. Kauhale ‘Ōiwi o Pu’ukapu combines green, high performance technology and the use of alternative building methods and energy sources which are aligned with Hawaiian values of mālama and aloha ‘āina.


The first building of Kauhale ‘Ōiwi o Pu’ukapu, called Hālau Ho‘olako, was dedicated in January 2009. Modeling an environmentally conscious green-building approach, Hālau Ho‘olako provides optimal learning conditions, to students attending Kanu o ka ‘Āina New Century Public Charter School. During non-school hours, the 9,300 square foot, $4.8 million dollar learning resource center offers a wide range of programs to learners of all ages.


Hālau Ho’olako is built to nationally stringent LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards, as well as high performance standards developed by the Collaborative of High Performance Schools (CHPS) which advocate environments that are energy and resource efficient, healthy, comfortable and contain the amenities needed for a quality education. Learning and gathering spaces feature optimal lighting, acoustical comfort and other learning conditions designed to encourage collaboration and integrated learning.


The landscape is designed, propagated and maintained by Kanu o ka ‘Āina’s K-12 students and features plants native to the Waimea area essential for maintaining and perpetuating the rich cultural heritage and vibrant traditions of Hawai’i’s Indigenous people.


The second phase of Kauhale ‘Ōiwi o Pu’ukapu was completed in July of 2011 includes Hālau Pōki’i, an early childhood complex providing seamless, culturally-driven education to 200 young children ranging from infants to grade 4 and Hālau Puke – a Native Hawaiian Resource library and learning commons and home to Kanuʻs Middle and High School students.

The third phase of Kauhale ʻŌiwi o Puʻukapu is the multi-purpose building, Hālau Hoʻokipa.  Its shell was completed March 2016 which consists of large open area and lanai.  Currently we are in pursuit of funding for a certified kitchen and cafeteria to complement the building.