Rooted in History and Experience
Welcome to St. Andrew’s Schools, Hawaiʻi’s experts in single gender education and differentiated instruction on the island of Oʻahu.
Celebrating more than 150 years of excellence in education, St. Andrew’s Schools provides eager minds with a personalized and learning-focused environment where students build their cognitive, academic, and social-emotional skills. Guided by the vision of our founder Queen Emma Kaleleonālani and grounded firmly in our Hawaiian heritage and spiritual values, the heart of a St. Andrew’s education is the meaningful relationship that takes place between our accomplished faculty and our inspired and engaged students.
Intentionally small, our 10:1 student/teacher ratio ensures that every child is encouraged to discover their most expansive and courageous selves. We inspire responsibility, encourage compassion, and build confidence and leadership in our students during their most formative years of development. A more intimate campus environment than our peer schools – St. Andrew’s is a warm, welcoming 'ohana where family, community, and service are integrated into a holistic and fulfilling school experience.
- Head's Welcome
- What Sets Us Apart
- History and Legacy
- Mission and Vision
- Guiding Principles
- Educational Philosophy
- About Coordinate Schools
Welcome to St. Andrew’s Schools, dedicated to excellence in education! This website is where you can learn more about our three-school community: The Priory, The Prep, and Queen Emma Preschool. To see our schools first-hand, please schedule a tour so you can meet our team and experience our campus.
A transformational thinker and leader, Queen Emma founded St. Andrew’s Priory School for Girls (The Priory) in 1867, making it the oldest all girl school on Oʻahu. Celebrating our 150th anniversary this year, The Priory continues to develop confident learners, creative thinkers and compassionate leaders through an innovative and personalized educational program for girls, grades K to 12.
The Prep, located on our Queen Emma Square campus, opened in the fall of 2014 and offers single gender classes designed specifically for boys in grades K to 6. The classroom activities engage young boys in a learning environment that builds upon their strengths and interests.
Named after our founder Queen Emma Kaleleonālani, the Queen Emma Preschool nurtures a love of learning through joyful discovery and play for children ages 2 to 5. The beautiful Nuʻuanu campus provides a foundational and natural learning environment designed to nourish a child’s innate sense of wonder and curiosity about the world.
St. Andrew’s Schools provide a student-centered education informed by universal values and our unique Hawaiian heritage. Immersed in this culture of care and challenge, children can realize their full potential and contribute to making the world a better place.
We welcome your inquiries as we offer the best in educational opportunities to the girls and boys and young women of Hawaiʻi.
Distinctive Benefits to Families
A Queen’s Legacy – Queen Emma Kaleleonālani’s foresight and understanding that Hawaiian girls needed to have access to a high-quality education was the underlying base for the development of St. Andrew’s Priory School for Girls. Since the founding of The Priory 150 years ago, St. Andrew’s Schools has grown to include a Boy’s School (The Prep) and a Preschool (Queen Emma Preschool). Today, St. Andrew’s Schools honors Queen Emma’s legacy by teaching and perpetuating her values of Aloha, Pono, Mālama, Kuleana, ‘Imi Na‘auao, and Ho‘omanawanui which are woven into our school traditions and educational curriculum.
Hawaiʻi’s Only Coordinate School – Research indicates that girls and boys learn very differently. St. Andrew’s Schools embraces those differences by offering separate classrooms to enhance the educational experience of both boys and girls. This approach, of having two single-gender schools in one family, is called “single gender coordinate education." The Prep provides a boy-friendly environment that embraces their enthusiastic energy and celebrates their talents and interests. The Priory offers a holistic academic, social, and emotional program specifically designed with girls’ unique needs, aspirations, and interests as the focus.
The Parent Experience – Informed, Involved, Integral – At St. Andrew’s Schools, education is a shared enterprise of home and school. Families play an active and supportive role in the life of the school and feel welcomed, valued, and connected. The involvement of parents—who organize activities, volunteer at events, and support our students in their academic, athletic, and arts endeavors—enhances our school life.
Inclusiveness in the Classroom – There is a greater sense of shared mission and community at St. Andrew’s Schools than at larger schools, which results in greater classroom participation for every student. Intentionally small, our 10:1 student/ratio allows teachers to have a better understanding of each students’ instructional needs, creating environments where all students are encouraged to participate and take appropriate risks.
Curriculum Without Bounds – Our interdisciplinary program is specifically designed to cultivate knowledge and skills as well as to spark interest and enthusiasm in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics). St. Andrew’s is a dynamic, intellectual community where learning is rigorous, student-centered, collaborative, experiential, and applied. These active academic experiences bring learning to life, forever changing a child’s perception of education and of self. With the guidance of dedicated teachers, St. Andrew’s students become drivers of their own learning and empowered seekers of knowledge.
Defining Learning as Doing – Our students are budding scientists, engineers, mathematicians, and programmers. From Kindergarten, our students learn to think like scientists and engineers as they ask, imagine, plan, and create towards collaboratively creating solutions to problems. Whether participating in Engineering Design Challenges, building, robots, or gardening, our students engage in multiple hands-on opportunities that challenge them to think critically, ask good questions, exercise their creativity, and share their knowledge with others.
Career Explorations & Readiness Program – Learning at St. Andrew’s is not limited to the classroom. Our unique school-workplace partnership program with local businesses, nonprofits, and government agencies gives students at every grade level the opportunity to connect their studies to the professional community outside their classrooms. At St. Andrew’s Schools, we believe that every student is capable of doing innovative, meaningful, and purposeful work.
 Aloha (Show affection and compassion for each other), Pono (Promote goodness and be upright in our actions), Mālama (Tend to the body, mind and spirit of each other), Kuleana (Demonstrate responsibility of self and toward others) ʻImi naʻauao (Foster joyful learning together), Hoʻomanawanui (Be steadfast and patient in our learning and challenges)
King Kamehameha IV and Queen Emma dedicated themselves to serving the health, educational, and spiritual needs of their people. To these ends they founded several schools, including St. Andrew’s Priory School for Girls and St. Alban’s School for Boys (now ‘Iolani School) and The Queen’s Hospital (now The Queen’s Medical Center). The King and Queen were instrumental in bringing the Anglican Church to the islands to provide access to a form of Christian spirituality the King felt was eminently suited to the character and temperament of his people.
The Queen was particularly attuned to the educational needs of the young women of her island nation. She envisioned a school where girls of Hawaiʻi would receive an education equivalent to what was traditionally offered only to boys. With the support of the Archbishop of Canterbury and the Sisters of the Holy Trinity, St. Andrew’s Priory School for Girls opened its doors on Ascension Day, May 30, 1867.
In 1902, jurisdiction of St. Andrew’s Priory School was transferred to the Episcopal Church of the United States and was run by the Sisters of the American Order of the Transfiguration until 1969. Since then, both Episcopal clergy and laity have served in the position of Head of School. In 1976, The Priory became a non-profit corporation, with a Board of Trustees and a Charter of Incorporation that continues an official link with the Episcopal Diocese of Hawaiʻi. The Priory is the only Diocesan school in Hawaiʻi, however no financial support for operations is received from the Diocese.
St. Andrew’s Schools is located on Queen Emma Square, along with the Episcopal Diocese of Hawaiʻi and The Cathedral of St. Andrew, property that was once The Royal Gardens.
St. Andrew’s Schools has developed courageous, compassionate leaders of tomorrow for more than 150 years. Our founder, the great Hawaiian leader Queen Emma Kaleleonālani was a visionary and transformational thinker. Affectionately called the “People’s Queen,” Queen Emma dedicated herself to serving the health, educational and spiritual needs of her people.
Queen Emma was known and loved for her progressive and passionate advocacy for justice and she worked tirelessly to address Hawaiʻi’s most pressing social needs, including healthcare for the Hawaiian people and equal education for girls. St. Andrew’s Priory, the oldest all-girls school in Hawaiʻi, is a lasting testament to her towering vision and efforts. Since the founding of The Priory in 1867, St. Andrew’s has grown to include The Prep, a K-8 boys school, and Queen Emma Preschool, for boys and girls ages two to five.
Today, the students of St. Andrew’s Schools honor Queen Emma by perpetuating her legacy of courageous and compassionate leadership.
To educate students in a culture of care, respect, love, and service. Each child is known, challenged, understood, and empowered to Kūlia i ka Nuʻu – Strive for the Highest.
Honoring our founder, Queen Emma Kaleleonālani, and with values deeply rooted in our Hawaiian and Episcopal heritage, St. Andrew’s Schools offers a personalized curriculum that inspires students to learn deeply, think critically and lead courageously.
Our vision is to help children learn and grow – to be their personal best, engaged in the world and inspired to make it more humane and just.
Our Hawaiian and Episcopal heritage is fundamental to our mission and vision. We celebrate and honor Queen Emma Kaleleonālani’s life of love, kindness, hope, faith, and service and follow her example to Kūlia i ka Nuʻu – Strive for The Highest – in all that we do. Our guiding core values are described below.
Be gracious, kind, loving and compassionate
Promote goodness and do the right thing
Take care of the mind, body and spirit and the natural world we live in
Recognize and embrace the responsibility we have to past, present and future generations
Foster joyful learning
Be patient, courageous and persevere
AIMS OF A ST. ANDREW’S EDUCATION
- Our students will develop strong, confident voices and a commitment to mastering, understanding and creating knowledge.
- Our students will develop the intellectual capacity and habits of mind to be successful and thrive in college, the workforce, and beyond.
- Our students will lead a life of purpose and service with integrity, respect, compassion, advocacy, and kindness.
- Our students will appreciate diversity, understand our connectedness to each other and to Earth, and have the ability to work individually and collaboratively in our global community.
- Our students will develop lifetime habits of physical, intellectual, spiritual, and emotional wellness so they can reach their promise and help others do the same.
We believe that all children can learn and that they need a teacher who
- loves, cares for, and believes in them,
- sets high expectations,
- ignites their curiosity,
- understands and implements what is known regarding the science of learning, and
- crafts the curriculum and instruction so students can be successful in their learning.
To accomplish this,
- We provide an engaging and challenging learning environment that is designed to meet the needs and aspirations of girls and boys using a single-gender coordinate educational system for students grades K - 12 and a coed, play-based program for our preschool students.
- We foster well-being in mind, body, and spirit to ensure a child’s healthy growth and development.
- We teach and model integrity, empathy, compassion, and loving-kindness, and call children to live an ethical life of purpose and service.
- We create personalized learning experiences, so students can uncover their individual talents and passions and have voice and choice in their school work. They learn how to set goals, honestly assess their progress, and be both inspired and motivated to persevere.
- We cultivate a culture of thinking, learning, leading, and doing that provides opportunities for deep inquiry, exploration, discovery and reflection.
- We empower students to lead with courage and conviction by creating opportunities to collaborate, create, and communicate as a member of the local, national, and global community.
- We are committed to lifelong learning and continued innovation in teaching and learning. By exploring and thoughtfully incorporating educational research (e.g. the neuroscience of learning) we work to create, design and implement a preschool – 12 curricular program which uses effective instructional and assessment strategies to enhance student learning.
Research indicates that girls and boys learn very differently and St. Andrew’s Schools embraces those differences by offering separate classrooms to enhance the educational experience of both boys and girls. This approach, of having two single-gender schools in one family, is called “single gender coordinate education.”
Many are familiar with St. Andrew’s Priory School for Girls, which opened its doors in 1867, as a leading college preparatory program. In 2012, St. Andrew’s Schools Board of Trustees decided to expand to help fill a gap facing families and communities: the education of boys.
This move comes amid a growing body of research showing that girls and boys learn differently and develop at different ages. Those differences, experts say, have contributed to a widening achievement gap between male and female students, with boys lagging on report cards, test scores and college admittance, among other areas.
Proponents of single-gender education often cite a heightened student focus in all-girls or all-boys schools. When girls and boys do not need to worry about impressing the other gender, they have more energy and focus on learning. Single gender classrooms also tend to ignore stereotypes that girls excel in one field, while boys in another.