Moanalua High School

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School Profile

School Profile

Community Profile

The Moanalua area, with over 37,000 residents, includes the neighborhoods of Moanalua, Salt Lake, parts of Red Hill, Kahauiki, and Mapunapuna, Tripler Medical Center, historic Moanalua Valley and Moanalua Gardens, Keehi Lagoon, and Honolulu International Airport. It includes light, industrial activity, small to large businesses, including new and used car businesses, car rental companies, small airport hotels, fast food restaurants, as well as military housing units.

The median age of its residents is 37.3, which is about the same as the State as a whole, although there are slightly lower percentages of children and senior citizens. The elderly who reside here rarely live alone and few live in poverty.

This ethnically diverse area has the second highest percentage statewide of Koreans and some of the highest concentrations of African Americans and Chinese. On the other hand, there is a much smaller percentage of Hawaiians and Part-Hawaiians, compared to other communities.

The median household income is calculated at $71,065, which is above the given State average of $66,420. Unemployment is low with relatively few families relying on food stamps. However, the percentage of people who own their own homes or have lived in the same house for more than 5 years is one of the lowest in the State.

Other indicators of child and family well-being in the Moanalua Area are more positive. Most of the public school teachers in this community have more than 5 years of experience in their schools, and a high percentage of teachers and parents report that their children’s schools are safe. School attendance is among the best in the State. A high percentage of high school seniors plan to go on to higher education and gain college acceptance at a level that is better than in most other communities Statewide

The community data suggests a number of things that make the Moanalua area unique among other communities in the State:


  • The community is a fairly “young” community with the median age at 36.
  • The largest ethnic group is Caucasian at 21.8%, which is close to the State average of 24.3%. Also, Afro-Americans comprise only 4.7% of the community of 37,300 but this number is two and half times larger than the State average of 1.8%. These percentages are indicative of the large military presence in the area—Tripler, Ft. Shafter, Aliamanu Military Reservation (AMR), Red Hill (Coast Guard), and the other military housing units that border the school.
  • The population data also indicates large percentages of Japanese (18.5%) and Filipinos (13.8%) and a concentration of individuals of Korean descent (5.2%), which is almost three times larger than the State average of 1.9%.
  • People of Hawaiian (2.9%) and Part-Hawaiian (10.9%) descent appear to be under-represented in the community in comparison to State averages that are almost double those numbers.
  • The per capita income ($21,321) is just under that of the State average of $21,525.
  • The incidence of home ownership at 46.3% is also low in comparison to neighboring communities like Aiea where the incidence of home ownership is around 64%. Again, the presence of a large military population with out-of-state residences and the high concentration of high rise structures in Salt Lake Crater suggest reasons for the lower percentages of residential stability (47%) in the community.
  • On the other hand, the community boasts a high percentage of residents with high school diplomas or higher (88.6%) with 28.1% of the population having earned bachelors’ degrees or higher.
  • The percentage of nuclear families (79.4%) is higher than the State average of 74.8% and the percentage of families receiving temporary assistance is half (2.0%) of the State average of 5.4%.
  • The percentage of children 3-5 enrolled in nursery and pre-school situations is also higher at 79.7% than the State average of 72.7%.
  • While reading and math SAT scores are lower than the State averages for third graders, attendance (95.7%) and graduation rates (96.5%) are higher than State averages.

Enrollment in Special Education classes (8.2%) and in ESL classes (5.6%) in the public schools in the community is also lower than numbers posted for the State.


Parent Community Organizations

School Community Council


Act 51, as passed by 2004 State Legislature, required all schools to transition from an SCBM Council to a School Community Council by June 2005. A draft of the new by-laws was distributed through the school newsletter, The Word, in March 2005 and parents were informed of an important meeting to discuss the transition that same month. All role groups were asked to review the draft and to provide necessary input. On April 19, 2005 the proposed by-laws were approved and put into effect in accordance with Act 51.


The newly formed SCC held its first meeting on June 14, 2005 and has continued to hold monthly meetings since. The Council Chairman is currently a community member, the Vice-Chairman is a student representative, and the Secretary is a parent. In addition, the remainder of the board is made up


It took as its name the Menehune Council and has identified its primary function as serving as a “policy-making and an advisory body through shared decision-making.” It also serves as “the trustee of the school’s vision and mission to help students” and has committed to focusing on “improved teaching and learning.”


There are 12 members on the Council: the Principal and Vice-Principal; three faculty members; one member of the classified staff; two students; two parents of enrolled students; and, two community members. With the exception of the Vice-Principal who was appointed by the Principal, all other members were chosen by their constituent groups.


This group has consistently demonstrated its desire and willingness to work towards school improvement. All role groups are actively involved in group discussions, such as providing input into and giving approval to the school’s Academic and Financial Plans.

Parent-Teacher- Student Association


The school’s PTSA is one of the most active among Hawaii high schools and boasts one of the largest parent memberships for secondary public schools in the state.


Beginning in 2004, the group has been sponsoring an annual Menehune Kina’ole Awards Dinner and Fundraiser, in which school volunteers, former staff and distinguished alumni are honored. A highly successful silent auction was a major part of the evening thanks to the generous donations from individuals and businesses throughout the state.


The PTSA is a key supporter for teachers and students: providing volunteers foor various events, offering student scholarships, funds for student travel to participate in national events and competitions, installing air conditioners in classrooms, and raising money for other school improvements.   In addition, the Association supports Staff Appreciations, and Project Graduation.


Project Graduation, which is solely parent run, requires that parents commit themselves to raising funds for graduation night activities from the time their children enter Moanalua as freshmen. Over a four-year period, the various grade level parent groups host various fund-raising activities like candy and bake sales, car washes, etc. in an attempt to raise enough funds to ensure a safe and enjoyable menu of activities for their graduating seniors on graduation night. The goal is always to attract as many seniors to the event as possible to lessen the chance of drug and alcohol-related incidents and accidents.


Music Boosters

The Moanalua High School Music Booster Association is an essential component of the music department. Not only do they provide financial support, but also sacrifice many man-hours to help plan, volunteer, and ensure that all students are being taken care of. They plan several fund-raisers through out the year and are a key player in planning the Menehune Marching Band Festival, which services over a dozen public schools statewide. Through their support our music department is able to reach out to the community providing performance and educational opportunities including charity concerts, public performances, and even national and international travel.


Athletic Boosters

The Moanalua Athletic Boosters is made up of parents, administrators, the athletic director and community members. This booster group supports athletes and teams in their athletic endeavors. They encourage attendance to athletic events and participate in fundraising programs in order to offer financial support to the athletic program. They also honor deserving athletes, coaches, and others associated with MoHS Athletics.


School/Business Relationships


The school shares a strong working relationship with its Complex schools, different educational institutions, and businesses.


  • A Complex consists of a high school and its feeder middle school(s) and elementary schools. The Moanalua Complex consists of four elementary schools (Shafter, Red Hill, Moanalua, and Salt Lake), the middle school (Moanalua Middle), and the high school.       Complex schools have demonstrated a high level of commitment to work together toward vertical alignment and increased achievement of all students served by our complex.


  • The Complex schools meet on a monthly basis in what we’ve named the Complex Academic Review Team or CART. This team, made up of Principals and Curriculum Coordinators from each of the schools works toward producing a high performing schools and a high performing complex. Most recently, the complex schools have all endorsed the use of Singapore Math as a way to address an identified need to improve mathematics achievement in all Complex schools. All four elementary schools use the Singapore, Primary Mathematics curriculum. Moanalua High School and Middle School have all attended professional development conferences on Singapore Math and have used the strategies to address the needs of students in need of remediation in mathematics.


  • The CART continues the dialogue to coordinate curriculum and professional development. Teachers from all Complex schools participate in the High School’s annual professional development conference, both by attending and presenting. The conference is open to the entire state and is attended by hundreds, including teachers and administrators from neighbor islands.


  • The high school has also forged a strong working relationship with the Moanalua/Aiea Community School for Adults, which shares space in the Administration Building and utilizes the high school’s classrooms and other facilities for its evening programs.       The adult school supports the school’s program for at-risk students in need of credits for graduation by providing a teacher for the after-school program.


  • The school also maintains programs for at-risk students at Honolulu Community College, Youth Challenge (for those interested in military careers), Job Corps (which is done in conjunction with the state), and High Core (for those who absolutely need an alternative learning situation).