Waldorf School has opened its high school campus in a new location, after years of legal battles with the residents of Niu Valley. The high school, which serves about 80 students, was moved over the summer from a renovated house in Kahala to the old Trans Pacific College building on Kalaniana'ole Highway. The school acquired the remaining 30 years on the lease of the building after the college closed in December.
The school had been looking for an alternative site for its high school ever since it opened in 1994. Originally, the school rented two classrooms from the Japan America Institute of Management Science in Hawai'i Kai for two years. Then the school moved to a remodeled house in Kahala. The school's new building is a more ideal location for the high school, near the lower-grades campus in Niu Valley, and much larger — 22,000 square feet compared to 8,000 square feet at the previous location. There's now enough space for a dedicated music room, two science labs, wood- and metalwork rooms, and study areas.
The Honolulu Advertiser explains the history of the search for a place to site the school: "Waldorf had originally planned to build a two-story, 10,000-square-foot high school building on its Niu Valley campus. When its conditional use permit was approved in January 2007, some Niu Valley residents petitioned the Zoning Board of Appeals. The school then filed a lawsuit against the city and the residents, asking a judge to deny the residents' appeal. BonnieOzaki-James [chairwoman of the Honolulu Waldorf School's lower school] said that the school dropped its plans for a new building and reached an amicable agreement with the neighbors in Niu Valley."
This location for a private high school will give Hawaii Kai residents an alternative to the drive to Punahou or Kamehameha, and other private schools closer to Honolulu. Visit Waldorf School Directory for all their locations.
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