Legacy of a Princess: Ke Aliʻi Bernice Pauahi Bishop

Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop was a woman of intelligence, compassion and foresight who understood that her kuleana as a Hawaiian ali‘i was to serve her people.

When Pauahi was born, the Native Hawaiian population numbered about 124,000. When she wrote her will in 1883, only 44,000 Hawaiians remained. Pauahi witnessed the rapid decline of the Hawaiian population. With that decline came a loss of Hawaiian language, culture and traditions. She believed education would offer her people hope and a future, so she left her estate - about nine percent of the total acreage of the Hawaiian kingdom - to found Kamehameha Schools.

Pauahi’s endowment supports Kamehameha Schools, which has grown into a statewide educational system serving more than 48,000 learners annually at 30 preschool sites; K-12 campuses on Hawai‘i, Maui and O‘ahu; and through a broad range of community outreach programs.

About Hawaiian Culture-Based Education

At Kamehameha Schools, we are focused on building a world-class Hawaiian culture-based organization and integrating culture in to our everyday operations. We strive to incorporate culture in the classroom, enterprise operations and daily communication. We believe that Hawaiian culture has a positive impact on education. By introducing keiki to foundational values and practices, we are instilling Hawaiian culture and a strong cultural identity in our future community and global leaders.

Morning wahie at Kawaiahaʻo Plaza

The morning wahie, or morning gathering, at Kawaiaha‘o Plaza is one of the unique traditions at Kamehameha Schools. Employees who wish to participate gather in the courtyard to sing, pray, reflect and share their mana‘o, or thoughts. It's an uplifting and inspirational start of the workday for many.

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