Parent & Student Testimonials
Testimonial from a parent of a recent Ho`ala graduate:
We would like to express our gratitude for the excellent education our daughter Sarah received at Ho`ala School. Sarah attended Ho`ala School from the sixth through twelfth grade. The intimate size of the school helps to foster individual attention and creates a family atmosphere which is highly conducive to academic and personal growth. Sarah was a shy girl entering your school, but with the help of dedicated and caring teachers, such as Maggie Pulver, Tina Markel and Nathan Radzak, her confidence and self esteem grew tremendously.
Sarah enjoyed being a Teacher's Assistant in the Kindergarten class as well as in the Science Club. She was a dedicated member of the Prom and Graduation Committees and served as President and Vice President (in the student council.) Sarah's interest in music grew with many years of piano lessons and recitals with teacher Keiko Poarch. Sarah was also very enthusiastic about art and drama classes and was encouraged and mentored by teacher Tina Markel. These classes helped to give Sarah a creative outlet in which to express herself and become more confident. The many service learning projects and outer island trips offered by Ho`ala are most treasured memories because she truly enjoyed making a difference in the community and helped to build true friendships with fellow students and teachers. The sense of Ohana (family) is very present at Ho`ala and that is what makes it truly unique. We believe Sarah will continue with her community service in the future and we thank Ho`ala for giving her a great foundation and for fostering this passion.
Sarah will be attending the University of New Hampshire in the fall majoring in Biology and has received the Dean's Scholarship for academic excellence. We are very proud of her and thankful to teachers, Nathan Radzak and Maggie Pulver for their diligent efforts in preparing her for college and for being her mentors. We will always be grateful for your time and friendship you so willingly shared with Sarah.
Sarah will be leaving the world she knew as a member of the Ho`ala Ohana and will be venturing off to campus life on the East Coast, but she will take with her the many valuable lessons and values that she learned at Ho`ala School and we believe she will make a difference.
Carlo and Patricial Balmilero
From a new 4th Grade student:
I love my new school! I have lots of friends. I'm learning lots of new things and I love having two recesses!! I've got new teachers I love. I've never been to a school this great!
Parent of a current 5th Grade student:
I'd like to acknowledge all the teachers and staff here at Ho`ala for the professionalism, compassion and comraderie they exhibit daily in school! This is a special school, using the 4 R's to help guide our children into becoming responsible, successful, awesome young adults! This school is a little gem, and I'm very happy and proud to describe Ho`ala School when people ask me where my son goes to school.
Testimonial from a former parent of two Ho`ala students:
I am most grateful for the education that our children and I have received from Ho'ala School. Our son, now in his second year at Creighton University receiving two of their merit scholarships, aspires to become a medical doctor. He spent his Fall break building a house with the Habitat for Humanity. Our daughter, now in her senior year and carrying a 4.0 gpa, aspires to become a veterinarian. Myself, as a mother from Ho'ala's parenting class and more importantly cookie bake, pumpkin carving and gingerbread house family events... benefited first hand from the values of raising children committed to "personal responsibility", family and community service. We have never had to sit down with our children to help them with their homework. Sister Joan forbade it. It was their work, not ours. Ho'ala has elevated "personal responsibility" in their curriculum for student, teacher and parenting success. Our children have become extraordinary students because they have come from this extraordinary school!
The Ho'ala parenting class encouraged us by admitting that there are no "how-to" books on personal responsibility. We were empowered with the skills to raise children who are awake, conscious, responsible, and resourceful citizens of our community. From this small Wahiawa private school, where cooperation means more than competition, and listening and clearing are skills actually taught and valued, I believe that the leaders of the world will spring.
Imua Kakou! Reiko Taba
Testimonial from a graduate's parent to Art Teacher Tina Markel:
As you already know about my feelings as to the incredible positive influence you have played in the life of my dear son, this is to simply, and briefly, put my thanks into words. I know that every student at Ho'ala could be saying the same things to you, for your connection to each one of them, your gentle, loving, patient touch upon each one of them in a most personal and caring, and role-modeling manner has been,and is, simply inspirational.
Your ability, and willingness, to truly look at each person, at who they are, and what their potential is, and to then encourage and nurture that potential like a seed to be sprouted, exemplifies a deeply giving and evolved spirit.
I have rarely, if ever, seen this degree of selfless caring given and displayed in my time by any teacher at any level, and please know that every student and every teacher is benefiting as a result of their association with you.
Your words at the graduation, your poetic and insightful interpretation of each one of the graduates, displayed a real knowledge of them, and of a way of presenting things such that the words could be received by them.
I am also aware that you desire no accolades, and am quite sure you are just a bit uncomfortable with these words, but true they are, and sometimes things need to be acknowledged. Thank you Tina. (Art Teacher)
Aloha a hui ho, Tom Powell
Testimonial from a elementary parent:
Thank you so much. There are so many reasons Ho'ala is such a wonderful school. There is no way public school would do this for me. I was so thrilled with my daughter's report card. She is doing so well. Amazing. Not only is she enjoying Ho`ala, she is doing well academically also, Ho`ala has been a godsend to our family. It’s amazing how your school has changed our daughter’s life around. Life is 180 degree turn around for her. I can't imagine her being that girl who used to bite herself until she was bruised..because she was so stressed at her old school.
Thank you and all the others there for rescuing her. Thank you so much for your support. If you ever stop and wonder if Ho'ala is making an impact.... you all are.
Mahalo, Pat Simmons