Moanalua High School

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Moanalua High School
2825 Ala Ilima Street


United States
Motto"Kulia I Ka Nu'u"
School districtCentral District
PrincipalRobin Martin
Faculty117.50 FTE [1]
Number of students1,942 (2017-18) [1]
Student to teacher ratio16.53 [1]
Color(s)Royal Blue and Silver   
AthleticsOahu Interscholastic Association
MascotNā Menehune
Rival Admiral Arthur W. Radford High School
AccreditationWestern Association of Schools and Colleges
NewspaperNā Hōkū O Moanalua
YearbookKe Ali'i
MilitaryUnited States Air Force JROTC
Website Official website

Moanalua High School (also known as MoHS [2]) is a public, co-educational college preparatory high school of the Hawaiʻi State Department of Education, located in Honolulu CDP, [3] [4] City & County of Honolulu, Hawaiʻi.

Serving grades nine through twelve and established in 1972, Moanalua High School is located in suburban Salt Lake near Moanalua. Its first class graduated in 1975. The school is situated on an extinct volcano hillside overlooking downtown Honolulu at 2825 Ala ʻIlima Street. The campus boasts the bronze sculpture Moanalua by Bumpei Akaji and the ceramic sculpture Silent Sounds by Shigeharu Yamada.

In May 2012 Tiffany Hill of Honolulu Magazine wrote that the school had "high-caliber programs" and a strong curriculum. [5] Hill stated that some programs are "nationally recognized". [6] In 2004 James Gonser of the Honolulu Advertiser wrote that the school had "A reputation for success". [7]

Moanalua High School recently[ when?] underwent reaccreditation by Western Association of Schools and Colleges and has achieved the maximum accreditation term of six years, 2012-2018.

Robin Martin heads the school as principal.


An ahupuaʻa in ancient Hawaiʻi was a parcel of land that stretched from the mountain to the sea. The ahupuaʻa of Moanalua was the property of wealthy landowner Samuel M. Damon.

Previous to Damon's ownership of the Salt Lake ahupuaʻa, the volcanic hillside on which Moanalua High School sits was used by native Hawaiians in the Hawaiian religion. As one of the highest points overlooking what would later become the city of Honolulu, the volcanic hillside was revered as a place where the faithful could be closer to the ancestral spirits and gods. It served as a sacred altar as late as the reign of King Kamehameha V.[ citation needed] The volcanic hillside's religious value was neglected during the urban development after statehood in 1959.

Moanalua High School adopted the menehune as their mascot. In Hawaiian mythology, the Menehune are said to be a people, sometimes described as dwarfs in size, who live in the deep forests and hidden valleys of the Hawaiian Islands, far from the eyes of normal humans. The menehune are believed to have a special relationship with the gods and credited with building dams, temples and other structures throughout the Hawaiian Islands.


The school has an attendance zone. Additionally as of May 2012 the school admits about 500-600 students from outside of the attendance zone. [5] A lottery is used to determine which out of boundary students are admitted. In 2004 Gonser wrote that the lottery process was "nail-bitting" [ sic]. [7]


In May 2012 the school had seven Advanced Placement (AP) classes. [5]

The Career and Academic Planning (CAP) program oversees career education classes, each running for 35 minutes and with each student taking at least one each week. The school began this program in 1997. [8]

The Comprehensive School Alienation Program (CSAP), as of May 2012, had about 180-240 students on an annual basis and is used to assist students having difficulty with coursework. [9]


Traditionally, the alma mater and anthem are sung during the presentation of the school's flag — a blue crest in the center of a field of blue and trimmed at the edges with white. The school's colors are royal blue and silver.


In May 2012 the school had about 2,010 pupils. [5] The students tend to have a higher socioeconomic profile. [6]

The following table represents the number of enrolled students from the years 2003 to 2014. [10]

2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
2,022 2,005 2,016 2,016 1,958 2,017 2,102 2,086 2,010 2,200 2,100 1,999

As of the 2012 school year, the racial/ethnic composition was as follows:

Moanalua High School serves the children of enlisted personnel and commissioned officers of the United States Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marine Corps and Navy. Students who are not military dependents are usually children of professionals living in the Salt Lake and Moanalua subdivisions, neighborhoods that have been classified as upper middle class.

Each graduating class averages 400 students. Approximately sixty percent become enrolled at four-year colleges and universities throughout the nation while thirty percent become enrolled at two-year colleges. Eight percent go straight to the workforce while four percent join the armed forces. About five percent enroll in technical schools while three percent are usually unsure of their post-graduation plans.[ citation needed] Moanalua High School has many valedictorians each year, in comparison to the other schools of the Hawaiʻi State Department of Education.[ citation needed] Many students graduate with the honor in a single class, with 20 in 1998.[ citation needed]

Academic performance

In 2004 about 80% of the students graduating from Moanalua went to universities and colleges. That year Gonser wrote that the "many success stories" originate from the "personal attention" and "choices" provided by the school's employees to the students. [7]


With the absence of professional sports teams in Hawaiʻi, the popularity of high school athletics is considerably high in the state.[ citation needed] In 2004 the school had 50 sports offered. That year about 800 students participated in those sports. [7]

In the year of Moanalua High School's founding, its athletics department joined the Hawaii High School Athletics Association. It currently also competes in the Oahu Interscholastic Association, an athletic conference of public schools on the island of Oʻahu. Moanalua High School competes in air riflery, baseball, basketball, bowling, canoe paddling, cheerleading, cross country, football, golf, judo, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track and field, wrestling and water polo. Sports are divided into boys' and girls' teams as well as varsity and junior varsity distinctions. The most popular sports based on attendance are football, basketball and wrestling. Joel Kawachi serves as the current Athletic Director.[ citation needed]

State Championships [12]

  • Basketball, Boys' - 1996, 1997
  • Bowling, Boys' - 1985, 1990, 2004
  • Golf, Girls' - 2006
  • Golf, Boys' - 2012, 2015, 2016, 2018
  • Competitive Cheerleading - 2003, 2004, 2005, 2015, [13] 2016
  • Golf, Individual - 1976 Maurice Jeanpierre (coached by Leslie Higashi), beat top players Kalua Makelena, Tommy Hines, D. Hurter, Robert Black, Wade Nishimoto, Brandon Kop and R. Castillo. [14]
  • Track, Girls' - 1994
  • Wrestling, Girls' - 1999, 2000, 2001
  • Judo, Boys' - 2010, 2011, 2012, 2018
  • Judo, Girls' - 2018
  • Air Riflery, Boys' - 2016, 2017

State Runners-up [12]

  • Baseball- 2011
  • Basketball, Boys' - 1978
  • Basketball, Girls' - 1992
  • Bowling, Boys' - 1984
  • Bowling, Girls' - 1979, 2016
  • Cross Country, Boys' - 1987
  • Cross Country, Girls' - 1991
  • Competitive Cheerleading - 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012
  • Golf, Boys' - 2009, 2010, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017
  • Soccer, Boys' - 1981, 1998
  • Soccer, Girls' - 2005
  • Track, Girls' - 1991
  • Wrestling, Girls' - 1998, 2002, 2003
  • Judo, Boys' - 2008, 2009, 2013, 2015, 2017
  • Judo, Girls' - 2014
  • Volleyball, Boys’ - 2016, 2018

The 2007 Boys' Basketball Team returned to the state tournament for the first time in ten years. The team qualified again in 2008 and made it to the Semi-Finals before having to forfeit all of their tournament games for the use of an academically ineligible player.

Music Program

The Music Department consists of a number of various ensembles. The list includes the Marching Band, the Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Symphony Orchestra, Symphonic Band, Concert Orchestra, Concert Choir, Chorus, Jazz Ensemble, and Concert Band (usually consisting of incoming freshmen). In 2007, the Concert Strings ensemble was introduced into the Music Department.

In May 2012 Hill stated that the orchestra was well reputed. [5]

The school also offers programs in piano and ukulele. These groups, however, do not perform.

In 2013, the school completed and dedicated the first phase of a new performing arts facility. [15] [16]

Marching Band

The Moanalua High School Menehune Marching Band is a marching band program (students grades 9-12) with an established record as being one of the top and largest marching bands in Hawaii. The band is led by directors Elden Seta, Rhona Barbosa, Cavin Takesue, and Todd Oshima.

The 220+ member program holds its own marching festival each year known as the Menehune Classic. It also competes in other annual competitions such as the Kamehameha Tournament of Bands, Mililani Trojan Band Fest, the Oahu Interscholastic Association (OIA) Festival, and the Rainbow Invitational. It usually marches in at least one parade each year, such as the Aloha Week parade, and is frequently invited to march in out-of-state parades such as the Tournament of Roses Parade.[ citation needed]

The marching band traveled to Osaka, Japan, to march in the Osaka Midosuji Parade. In the winter of 2009, the band traveled to Arizona to participate in the Fiesta Bowl Parade.[ citation needed]

Symphony Orchestra

The Moanalua High School Symphony Orchestra consists of hand-picked students from grades 9 to 12. The Symphony Orchestra was the first student orchestra to be invited to perform at New York's Carnegie Hall in 1998. [17] The Symphony Orchestra were invited to perform again on March 20, 2005 at the Isaac Stern Auditorium, receiving a standing ovation in which audience members reportedly yelled, "Good job, Hawaiʻi!" [18] Moanalua High School Symphony Orchestra performed at Carnegie Hall a 3rd time in 2013. In 2018, Moanalua High School Symphony Orchestra attended American String Teachers Association National Orchestra Festival in Atlanta, Georgia. Moanalua High School Symphony Orchestra took first in High School Full Orchestra Division and were overall Grand Champions in the High School Division.

Symphonic Wind Ensemble

The Moanalua High School Symphonic Wind Ensemble consists of the most competent wind and percussion musicians in the Moanalua High School band program. The Symphonic Wind Ensemble has received consistent Superior ratings at the Oʻahu Band Directors' Association Parade of Bands.[ citation needed] The Symphonic Wind Ensemble plays at winter and Aloha Concerts, the OBDA Parade of Bands, and the Central District South Parade of Bands. The Ensemble has also traveled to Japan in the spring of 2004 and winter of 2006 where they represented the United States in the All-Japan Band Festival in Hamamatsu, Japan. More recently, the wind ensemble represented Hawaii in the 2015 Music for All National Festival in Indiana.


The school has an Air Force JROTC; in 2004 it was the largest such program in Hawaii. [7]


  1. ^ a b c Moanalua High School
  2. ^ to differentiate itself from MHS, the abbreviation associated with McKinley High School and Mililani High School
  3. ^ "2010 CENSUS - CENSUS BLOCK MAP (INDEX): Urban Honolulu CDP, HI" (PDF). U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2020-10-08. - The area with the school is on page 4.
  4. ^ "Home". Moanalua High School. Retrieved 2020-10-08. 2825 Ala Ilima Street Honolulu, HI 96818
  5. ^ a b c d e Hill, Tiffany (May 2012). "From Iolani School to Moanalua High School: A Parents' Tale". Honolulu Magazine. Retrieved 2020-10-07.
  6. ^ a b Hill, Tiffany (May 2012). "A Tale of Two Schools in Hawaii". Honolulu Magazine. p.  4. Retrieved 2020-10-07.
  7. ^ a b c d e Gonser, James (2004-06-03). "School's focus on quality pays off in student achievement". Honolulu Advertiser. Retrieved 2020-10-08.
  8. ^ Hill, Tiffany (May 2012). "A Tale of Two Schools in Hawaii". Honolulu Magazine. p.  5. Retrieved 2020-10-07.
  9. ^ Hill, Tiffany (May 2012). "A Tale of Two Schools in Hawaii". Honolulu Magazine. p.  6. Retrieved 2020-10-07.
  10. ^ "School Status and Improvement Report". Accountability and Resource Center Hawaii. Hawaii State Department of Education. Retrieved 2 September 2014.
  11. ^ "Moanalua High School Status and Improvement Report School Year 2012-13" (PDF). Hawaii State Department of Education.
  12. ^ a b "Moanalua High School Athletics Homepage". Moanalua High School Athletics Department.
  13. ^ "Radford, Moanalua claim state cheerleading crowns". Retrieved 2015-12-07.
  14. ^ "Boys golf state championship" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on May 10, 2006. Retrieved March 14, 2007. 2012[ dead link]
  15. ^ "New music building dedicated". Moanalua High School.
  16. ^ "Moanalua High School Performing Arts Center". Wilson Okamoto Corporation.
  17. ^ "Elden Seta -- Milken Education Award Winner, 2003!". Moanalua High School. Archived from the original on October 13, 2006.
  18. ^ Vorsino, Mary (21 March 2005). "Moanalua hits high note on trip". Honolulu Star-Bulletin.

Further reading

External links

Latitude and Longitude:

21°20′45″N 157°54′01″W / 21.345940°N 157.900328°W / 21.345940; -157.900328