Principal's Message



Aloha 'Ohana Kahala -


My name is Kinau Gardner, and I have had the honor or being the principal of Kahala Elementary since 2010.   I graduated from Hilo High School and attended the University of Hawaii at Manoa, where I received a Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education and a Masters Degree in Education Administration. Before I became an administrator, I was an English teacher and curriculum coordinator at Jarrett Middle School in Palolo Valley for 16 years.  As a school administrator, I served as a vice principal at Ala Wai Elementary and Jefferson Elementary.  


When I came to Kahala, one of my first tasks was to revisit and recommit us to the school's vision.  “Kahala is a nurturing environment that provides a foundation for continuous personal and academic growth.”  I asked a local Hawaiian poet to “translate” our vision statement into Hawaiian. The beautiful thing about the Hawaiian language is that it is very descriptive and poetic. The essence of the vision was captured in the translation. 


“He wai wai nui ke aloha; ‘o ka’u nō ia pūlama nei 

no na kamali‘i ‘o Kāhala."

"Teaching is of great value; it is 

what I do to nurture the children of Kahala.”


Kahala has a great reputation, and families come from all over our island to be a part of this wonderful school. My challenge and goal is to live up to those high expectations, and to provide a school community that grows children’s hearts and minds; to sustain an environment that is harmonious, rigorous, and aspirational for teachers and students alike. 


If you are a parent here at Kahala, I thank you for entrusting us with your child’s education. If you are not a part of our ‘ohana, I welcome you to come see our school, sit and visit with me, and learn more about this special place.


Me ka ha’a ha’a,


Kinau Gardner, Principal