Together as One is our strategic plan for ‘Iolani School, the culmination of more than a year of work driven by our board, faculty, and staff. We are grateful for the time, thought, and passion contributed by our community as we worked together on this important roadmap for the future of our school.

Together as One will serve as the foundation for our campus master planning process, and its strength will be tested by our dynamic and rapidly changing world. We are confident that the scope and vision of this strategic plan will allow ‘Iolani School to maintain its great traditions and thrive as a leading institution of learning for many years to come.

‘Iolani nō ka ‘oi,

Timothy R. Cottrell
Head of School

Jenai Wall
Chair of the Board of Governors

A Single Mission

Though we are many, we are united in our mission to develop liberally educated, well-rounded individuals who are prepared for higher education and responsible, moral citizenship.

A Shared Vision

‘Iolani School will be the global model for a forward-looking education, positively challenging individuals with the work ethic and courageous character to thrive in a fast-changing world.

  • Inspire passion
  • Sharpen minds
  • Refine talents
  • Provide an education for a lifetime

A timeless education built on a rich heritage

The history of ‘Iolani School is interwoven with the story of Hawai‘i. From a small mission school for young men founded during the reign of King Kamehameha IV, we have grown into one of the largest independent schools in the nation. Through the years, our students and faculty have brought a wealth of diverse experiences and backgrounds. We remain united by a dedication to academic excellence and personal growth.

1862At the request of King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma, the English Church and its Anglican missionaries founded what would become ‘Iolani School.

1871Rev. George Mason’s Lahaina School merged with St. Alban’s College on O‘ahu. ‘Iolani was given its name, which means “heavenly hawk.”

1879Dr. Sun Yat-sen, the father of modern China, entered ‘Iolani and attended until graduating in 1882.

1917The school’s first commencement was held in June. There were four 12th-grade graduates and sixteen 8th-grade graduates.

1932Rev. Kenneth A. Bray became Director of Athletics in September, inspiring future generations of the school with his sportsmanship and “One Team” philosophy.

1942After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the school closed its doors temporarily. There were no graduating classes for the remainder of the war, although 34 seniors were tutored and received diplomas in June.

1953‘Iolani completely relocated from Nu‘uanu to the Ala Wai campus.

1970Rev. David P. Coon was appointed as headmaster.

1979‘Iolani became co-educational with the addition of girls in the 7th and 9th grades.

1981The Father Kenneth A. Bray Athletic Complex, home to the ‘Iolani Raiders, was dedicated on June 24.

1991Edward K. Hamada ’46 retired as Director of Athletics, and the track and field were named in his honor.

1995Dr. Val T. Iwashita ’67 became the first alumnus to serve as headmaster, and did so until his retirement in 2012.

2009The school purchased 5.5 acres of land adjacent to campus.

2012‘Iolani broke ground for the Sullivan Center for Innovation and Leadership.

What the future holds,
We will see
together as one.

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as one

Strategic Plan 2016-2021

‘Iolani School will be the global model for a forward-looking education, positively challenging individuals with the work ethic and courageous character to thrive in a fast-changing world. The scope of this plan will allow us to get there.


Teaching Timeless Skills For Future Success

Through a challenging yet compassionate educational experience, we will continue our legacy of preparing ‘Iolani students to thrive in higher education and in an ever-changing world. We will develop smart and capable individuals with the capacity to reach any goal set before them.

Learn and grow together

Strengthen our commitment to relationship-based education and small classes in which students are encouraged to take intellectual risks, collaborate with peers, and solve problems creatively.

motivation from within

Provide real-world learning opportunities that enable students to dive deep, pursue their passions, and develop a resilient inner drive for excellence.

Empower digital pioneers

Prepare students to lead in the evolving and expanding world of information access, creation, sharing, and communication.

Inspire educators

Foster a supportive, collaborative, joyful environment where teachers grow and thrive as professionals committed to creating a superior educational experience.


Building Bridges and Forming Character

‘Iolani School remains dedicated not only to sharing ideas, but also to a set of ideals. We will preserve and expand the “One Team” spirit and philosophy, raising respectful and morally courageous team members who value collaborative achievement and display selflessness, intellectual humility, and mutual respect.

At ‘Iolani, you are known

Perpetuate our great tradition of student-centered learning, which allows teachers to recognize and encourage the limitless potential in each of our students.

Exceed expectations

Build on our long-standing commitment to high standards of character and conduct.

Humble in victory

Encourage the achievement of excellence with humility in and out of the classroom.

the global classroom

Create meaningful, sustainable, and reciprocal global relationships that stimulate the exchange of ideas, foster a deeper cultural awareness, and build students’ desire to improve the world around them.

Commitment to Community

Develop programs and partnerships that allow students to work, learn, and become community leaders through service and outreach.


raising the whole child

We offer ‘Iolani students an education for a lifetime, providing opportunities for all to participate in scholarly, spiritual, social, aesthetic, and physical pursuits. With a balanced education, they will grow into the active and informed citizens our communities need.

Time to pursue passions

Ensure that students maintain a healthy balance between academic and non-academic activities, with time to identify and master the subjects and activities they love.

Room to venture

Provide time and space for students to seek out their own opportunities, try new activities, and explore subjects without fear of failure.

Strong minds and hearts

Honor our Episcopal heritage and spiritual foundation through programs that put faith in action and teach character, ethics, emotional literacies, self-awareness, and respect for others.

Balanced learning and living

Review schedules, requirements, and guidelines to ensure that students lead a well-rounded life with time for family, reflection, and deep understanding.


inspiring within exceptional spaces

We are committed to creating leading-edge facilities and providing spaces for discovery, growth, and expression, where students can develop the unique talents and skills that they will share with the world.

Setting the stage

Plan and construct spaces that showcase our outstanding drama, music, and dance programs and serve as a community-wide resource for the performing arts.

Providing a canvas

Develop a campus that supports student innovation, creativity, and responsible risk-taking.

our campus as our world

Engage students in the choices we make as a school toward a more sustainable future and elevate the importance of world sustainability.

at the center

Improve and maintain spaces that bring us together, foster relationships with the community around us, and enhance student and faculty life.