Niu Valley Middle School

An International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme World School

About Us


Niu Valley Middle School

Niu Valley Intermediate/Middle School History

Established 1955

Accredited by Western Association of Schools and Colleges to 2019

An International Baccalaureate MYP World School

Situated within the Niu Valley neighborhood, we service the East Honolulu Communities of Kalama Valley, Hawaii Kai, Kuliouou, Niu Valley, Aina Haina, Wailupe Valley, and Waialae Iki. Students also hail from all administrative districts on Oahu. We implement with fidelity, the National Middle School philosophy, the Hawaii Content and Performance Standards, Common Core Standards, and the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme with students in Grades 6 through 8. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges issued a six-year accreditation, with a mid-term visit, to June 30, 2019. On February 23, 2010, the International Baccalaureate Organization fully authorized us to offer the Middle Years Programme (MYP), Years 1-3. The current authorization is through 2014, and an Evaluation Visit is scheduled for December 2013.

Built on farm land, Niu Valley “Intermediate” School was opened in 1955, when Hawaii was a U.S. Territory, and the public schools were under the purview of the City and County of Honolulu. Due to construction delays, the first class of students (Grade 7) was housed at Aina Haina Elementary and Koko Head Elementary Schools.  Initial construction was completed in May, 1956 and welcomed the students.  The first class, consisting of Grade 7 only, began on the present site in the Fall of 1956. Dedication ceremonies were held on February 16, 1958.

Hawai`i became a state of the United States of America on August 21, 1959. One of the first acts of the new Hawaii Legislature was to place public school education as a state responsibility. This was done in 1960.

Niu Valley “Intermediate” first full year at the present site served only Grade 7 (1956-57) to accommodate construction progress, then grades 7-9 thereafter until 1974. In 1974, Kaiser High opened to include grade 9. Niu Valley serviced grades 7-8, then included an optional grade 6 in 1989. It was then that our school first explored the middle school philosophy and concept. Grade 6 was included if there was sufficient enrollment of one to two classes.

The Honolulu District renamed all “Intermediate” schools as “Middle School” in December 1997, to support the Carnegie Council Report on reforming middle grade education - Adolescent Development's Task Force on Education of Young Adolescents.  However, in 1989, Niu Valley was the second school in the State of Hawaii, public or private, to operate as a middle school.

The art sculpture fronting our school on Halemaumau Street is called “Mayan Ruins,” designed by Internationally-acclaimed artist, William Mitchell. The sculptures were completed in 1972.  At the time, the technique in sculpture was new; the medium is cast concrete, and sand-blasted into environmental art. Each pillar is covered with intricate designs, having the effect of Mayan or Aztec culture. Artist Mitchell casted the molds in England. Concrete was poured in Hawaii at the Dillingham Base Yard.  The blocks were installed and sandblasted on our campus. Local artist Joe Hadley worked with Mitchell.

“Mayan Ruins” was funded through the Hawaii State Foundation for Culture and the Arts, Art in Public Place Program.

Niu Valley Middle School celebrated our 50th Anniversary in 2005 with a luau. The second 50 years began with the movement of all Kaiser Complex feeder elementary school Grade 6 students to our school, and quest to become an International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme World School.

From the 50th Anniversary, a new school logo was designed by local artist, and NVMS Art Teacher, Mr. Nicholas Black. In 2006, a ho’oponopono was convened with community kupuna, artist Mr. Black, administration, and guests. The logo used our Hawaiian host culture motif and we desired to be “pono,” and supported by our community. All Kupuna agreed, “Maka`i!”

Per IB MYP requirements, all students were enrolled in the MYP in School Year 2008-09 to demonstrate that NVMS could deliver and sustain this world-class programme. Since 2006, teachers and staff  had been preparing by attendance at IB Certification workshops, curriculum planning and pilot testing of units. New to the school was the requirement for Language B, or non-mother tongue language. Japanese and Chinese Mandarin were added to the curriculum. Additionally, all students enroll in Physical Education each year, and one of the Arts (performing or visual).

IB Technology is being learned through the Sciences in each year. Central to IB Technology is the “Design Cycle.”  Over the course of three years, students apply the IB Design Cycle in each of the three areas: Information, Materials, and Systems.

In 2013, an IB Report Card was rolled out, along with the standard Department of Education Report Card.  “IB Scores” were converted into the American A-F grade marks.
Educational technology include a mobile laptop cart of 25 laptops in each to the following classrooms: Science, Language A (English Language Arts), World Languages and selected Special Education.  Full computer laboratory for: Media (2) classrooms and Yearbook. Interactive White Boards are being used in all Mathematics and Humanities classrooms, and selected Special Education classrooms.

A deluxe “Weather Bug” weather station was installed in 2007, courtesy of the school’s fundraising arm/parent support group, the Friends of Niu Valley Middle School. Data from our weather station was used locally as a School Net broadcast on K-FVE. However, weather data, to include a color camera, can be accessed world-wide.

Our Vision:
The vision of Niu Valley Middle School is to prepare our students with the mind and character to be self-reliant, reflective, and compassionate young adults in a global community.

Our Mission:
We strive to provide a rigorous, relevant, holistic education where all students practice international-mindedness as stewards of our world and its people.

1. Western Association of Schools and Colleges
     a. 2013: Six year term to 2019 with 1 day revisit and report in 2016.
     b. 2010: Three year term to 2013.
     c. 2007: Three-year with revisit in 2010.
     d. 2001: Six-year term to 2007.
2. International Baccalaureate Office
     a. World School: Authorized on February 23, 2010 (Evaluation visit: December 2-4, 2013)
     b. Candidate School: July 2008
     c. Prospective School: January 2007

Educational Initiatives

  • 1960. Intern and Practice Teaching Program. Illinois Math Plan. Band and Orchestra established.
  • September 1989. Optional Grade 6 opens. Middle School philosophy and concepts explored. Niu Valley becomes the second school in the State of Hawaii, public or private, to operate as a middle school. (Stevenson Middle School was the first.) Niu Valley is granted a 6 year WASC Accreditation.
  • September 1992. School Community Based Management (SCBM) begins. Vision and mission adopted to reflect a change in thinking and beliefs from “intermediate” to “middle” school.
  • 1994. Hawaii Content and Performance Standards debut, nicknamed, “Blue Book.”
  • 1995. NV earns 6-year WASC Accreditation.
  • December 1997. Honolulu District converts all of its Intermediate Schools to Middle Schools.
  • Fall 1999, Hawaii Content and Performance Standards II. (Also known as, HCPS II, and “Rainbow Books.”) Standards Implementation Design System begins the following year.
  • 2001. Hawaii Department of Education Middle Level Education Policy draft used in NVMS WASC Accreditation, and earns a 6-year term.
  • 2004 Legislature. Enacted Act 51, Reinventing Education Act.
  • 2005. SCBM replaced by School Community Councils through Act 51. Academic and Financial Plan replaces Standards Implementation Plan and School Budgeting process.
  • July 2006.  Inaugural Grades 6-8 configuration, full implementation of Middle School Philosophy (National Middle School Association).
  • 2007. Initiate pursuit of Authorized World School status (International Baccalaureate Office): Prospective IB School status. NVMS given 3-year revisit accreditation by WASC.
  • April 2008. Vision and Mission revised, signaling a change in direction, visioning a global perspective, while supporting the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme, the Department of Education Beliefs and Values, as well as the National Middle Years Philosophy.
  • July 2008. IB Candidate School status reached.
  • February 2010. IB World School status reached.
  • 2012-2013 Vision and Mission revised.

Principals and Vice Principals

Yoshiaki Eto, First Principal, 1955-1956

Earl C. Holmer,  1956-1957

Alexander R.K. Parker, 1957-1961

  • Robert Ito, Vice Principal, 1959-1960

Janet Landgraf, 1961-1967

  • Various Interim and Acting Vice Principals, 1961-1966
  • Albert Y. Tamaribuchi, Vice Principal, 1966-67

David C. Moriyama, 1967-1975

  • James Yuasa, Vice Principal, 1967-69
  • Stanley Seki, Vice Principal, 1969-1971
  • Charlie Oba, Vice Principal, 1974-1978

Dr. Bill Southwood, 1975-1979

  • James Yuasa, VP, 1979-1994

James Tomita, 1980-82

  • James Yuasa, VP, 1979-1994

Dr. Claudia Chun, 1982-May 1984

  • James Yuasa, VP, 1979-1994

Eric Heu, May 1984-Dec. 2002

  • James Yuasa, VP, 1979-March 1995
  • Hazel Hasegawa, Interim VP, March 1995
  • Judy Toguchi, Administrative Intern, 1994-95
  • Janice Ing, VP,  1995-1997
  • Pamela Ishimoto-Kiyuna, VP,  1999-2000
  • Karen Narimasu, Interim Acting VP, 2000-2001
  • Jean Hartman, VP, 2001-2003

Jean Hartman, Acting Principal, January 2003
Ann Paulino 2003-2004

  • Kelly Bart, Vice Principal, 2003-2011

John Flynn 2004-2005

  • Kelly Bart, Vice Principal, 2003-2011

Kelly Bart, December 2003-February 2003, Acting Principal

  • Gavin Yaji, December 2003-February 2003, Acting VP

Justin S. N. Mew, February 2006 to 2014

  • Kelly Bart, Vice Principal, 2003-2011
  • Mavis Kawamura, ACE Intern, Vice Principal, 2007-2008
  • Jeffrey Shitaoka, ACE Intern, Vice Principal, 2008-2011
  • Andrew Szkotak, Vice Principal, 2011—present
  • Wendy Kau, Vice Principal, 2012—present
  • William Grindell, ACE Intern, 2012-2013
  • Peter Schaktman, ACSAP Vice Principal, 2013-2014

Brendan Burns, Acticing Principal, 2013-2014

Sean S. Tajima, Principal, July 2014-Present

  • Andrew Szkotak, Vice Principal, 2011-Present 
  • Marc Kawahara, Vice Principal, 2013-Present
  • Marc Kawahara, Vice Principal, July 2014-Present