Kihei Charter School

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Kihei Charter School
Kihei, Maui, Hawaii
United States
Type Public, Charter
Motto Innovative 21st Century Public Education[2]
Established 2001[1]
School district Hawai'i Department of Education
Director John Colson
Grades K-12
Number of students 546 [1]
Campus Urban
Color(s)              Blue, Silver & Black
Mascot Tiger Sharks
Accreditation Western Association of Schools and Colleges[1]
Affiliations South Maui Learning Ohana
HealthierUS School Challenge Yes (Bronze)

Kihei Charter School is a public Charter School located in Kihei (on the island of Maui), Hawaii. Founded in 2001, Kihei Charter is the only charter school on the island and is the only high school in Kihei. The school has three branches; a Virtual Elementary School, a Middle School, and a High School.


Kihei Charter School was founded in 2001 by the South Maui Learning Ohana (SMLO). SMLO is a grass-roots non-profit organization, which at the time of the school’s founding was composed of parents, educators, students, special needs specialists, small business development advocates, school administrators, public officials, a teacher’s union representative, people experienced in technology integration within learning situations, and other members of the South Maui community. The SMLO steering committee was twelve members and it met regularly for two years prior to submitting its charter to the State of Hawaii. Its broader affiliation included 1200 Maui residents who petitioned for the school’s creation. South Maui was without a high school and, in the year prior to the school’s opening, sent approximately 1,000 students to high schools in other communities on Maui.[1]

In its first year, the school shared a space with the Kihei Youth Center in North Kihei. Student enrollment at that time was approximately 60 students in grades 10-12. During the summer of 2002, the school relocated to another North Kihei location at 300 Ohukai Road. That school year, KCS also extended its enrollment to include ninth grade. During the 2004-05 school year, the school expanded to serve grades K-12. During summer 2006, KCS relocated to a new facility within the complex at 300 Ohukai Road, which was the former site of Hope Chapel. During summer 2007, the school acquired additional space for a second campus in Kihei and expanded its enrollment to accommodate a new Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) program for middle school students. In 2009 the school acquired additional space and expanded the second campus and relocated it to Lipoa Center, right in the heart of Kihei. This campus serves students in grades K-8 and the Ohukai campus serves students in grades 9-12. Kihei Charter School’s STEM focus now spans all grades K-12.[1]


High School[edit]

Kihei Charter High School
300 Ohukai Rd
Kihei 96753
Grades 9-12
Hours in school day 7
Classrooms 6
Site Administrator Megan Edgar

Opened in 2001, Kihei Charter High School has a unique scheduling system due to budget cuts. Freshmen typically attend Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday, Sophomores typically attend Tuesday through Thursday, and Juniors and Seniors typically attend Monday and Wednesday.[3]

High School students are required to take at least one Aventa Learning virtual course in order to graduate. Kihei Charter High School is also the only school in Hawaii to offer Running Start courses on the high school campus. Kihei Charter has partnerships with a wide array of community partners who provide supervised internships for credit to KCS students have also expanded the school’s academic opportunities beyond the four walls of the school.

STEM Academy[edit]

Kihei Charter STEM Academy
41 East Lipoa Street
Kihei 96753
Grades 6-8
Hours in school day 6.5
Classrooms 6
Site Administrator Maria Robinson

In 2007, Kihei Charter expanded and added a middle school called "Kihei Charter STEM Academy". The following year, Kihei Charter opened up a campus called "Arts Academy". Located in the Maui Academy of Performing Arts building, the campus focused on Visual and Performing Arts. In 2009, the STEM Academy and Arts Academy combined to create "Kihei Charter TEAMS Academy". Due to lack of art, the campus was renamed back to STEM Academy the following year.


  1. ^ a b c d e "Kihei Charter School History". Retrieved 2012-07-01. 
  2. ^ "Kihei Charter School Official Website". Retrieved 2012-07-01. 
  3. ^ "KCSHS Handbook" (PDF). Retrieved 4 September 2013. 

Coordinates: 20°46′18″N 156°27′02″W / 20.771800°N 156.450663°W / 20.771800; -156.450663