Punahou School

From Academic Kids

Punahou School
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Seal of Punahou School


Punahou School


1601 Punahou Street


Honolulu, Hawaii 96822






Private Primary and Secondary


Christian (non-denominational)




K to 12


Western Association of Schools and Colleges






"Puns" or "Buff 'n Blue"


Hala (Pandanus) Tree


Buff and Blue




United States Army JROTC


Ka Punahou


The Oahuan


One of the largest independent schools in the United States


Link (http://www.punahou.edu/)


Link (mailto:hr@punahou.edu)

Punahou School, formerly Oahu College, is a private, co-educational, non-sectarian college preparatory school located in Honolulu in the state of Hawaii. With a student body that averages 3700 students annually in kindergarten through the twelfth grade, Punahou School is one of the largest independent schools in the United States. Founded in 1841 as Oahu College, Punahou School was originally a school for the children of Congregationalist missionaries serving throughout the Pacific region. The land on which Punahou School sat was a gift of Queen Kaahumanu to the Rev. Hiram Bingham, the first Christian missionary in Hawaii. The first class was held on July 11, 1842 and consisted of only fifteen students. With a proud and rich history, Punahou is the most respected academy in Hawaii, and one of the top schools in the nation



Punahou School derives its current name from local folklore about the area's water source. According to the story, an aged Hawaiian couple lived on the land but had to travel quite a distance for water. As this was difficult for a couple of their age, they prayed for a spring. In a dream they were told to uproot the stump of an old pandanus tree. Upon doing so, they discovered a spring which they named Ka Punahou, which in Hawaiian language literally means the new spring. Located beside the school chapel, the spring is the centerpiece of the Punahou School campus.

Case Middle School

A gift of ten million dollars by America Online founder Steve Case, a Punahou School graduate of 1976, led to construction of a new middle school for grades six, through eight.

The idea of a new middle school started when Punahou started looking at the needs of the middle school. The building and construction of it started off with a gift of over 10 million dollars from Steve Case, a Punahou alumnus and former CEO of AOL.

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Interior of a sixth grade classroom with supply cart, avive collection tables and caper chairs.
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Case Middle School features buildings with open patios, like that of this seventh grade building.

Some time into the project, the school heard and learned about LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. The school then hired a design consultant for sustainability and found out that they could earn the highest LEED standard, the gold. Only a few in the world have earned the gold rating.

How the Case Middle School is sustainable is through many different methods. They have installed sensors that can shut off the air conditioner if the windows are opened to let in the breeze. After all, the buildings are situated to take full of the tradewinds, with the help of the venturi effect. There are also sensors in place that turn on or off the lights depending on if it senses motion, and also the sensors dim the lights on sunny days or brighten the lights on overcast or cloudy ones. More efficient T-5 lamps are used and this saves 75% energy and last 13 times as long as incandescent ones.

Air conditioning for the buildings will be done by ice making plants that freeze and collect ice at night when electricity is cheaper and then the ice will melt during the day to cool the air. There is one plant for each grade level's section of Case Middle School; three in total.

The furniture was provided by Herman Miller. The furniture include pieces from the action office system, passage desking system, intersect portfolio, caper chairs, mirra chairs, meridian unity lateral files, avive table collection and procedure supply carts.

The whole Case Middle School cost over sixty million dollars and made possible through donations. The new middle school has opened on January 4, 2005, but the sixth graders had been using their buildings since the beginning of the 2004 through 2005 school year.

Notable Students



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