Head of School Blog

Tangible and Intangible Gifts


I don’t know how many times I’ve been asked to share what I miss most about pre-COVID times or the first thing that I will do when this era ends, but I do know that I don’t share, often enough, appreciation for all that we’ve been given and all that we have.

I can point to innumerable tangible “gifts”. The gift of an incredible teaching faculty and support staff who have made all that we enjoy on campus safe and possible. Teaching is a “calling” at LJA, and teachers continuously go the extra mile to every learner. Our support staff is a glue that holds this ‘ohana together, brightening our days with cheerful words, and helping hearts and hands. The many gifts of parents and friends who go above and beyond, help others and bring a little sunshine by sharing their aloha. 

The gift of coming together as a community to feel connected and entertained thanks to an innovative networking platform to kick-off our 60th Anniversary celebration--which, hosted by our own LJA students, Aria and Rocket, is a must see! Tangible gifts for which to be thankful abound.

Then, there are the intangible and priceless gifts: 

  • Students, returning from distance learning, inhaling the distinctive breeze passing through the uplands of Ulumawao
  • Eager first graders sharing their creative inventions to solve important problems like capturing refuse as storm run-off courses through campus drainage systems
  • Middle schoolers enjoying a pick-up game of basketball or volleyball -- or finding a quiet spot to read during lunch
  • A group of high schoolers using their IMPACT block to build a mobile plastics-recycling makerspace
  • A principal’s dramatic knee-deep rescue of a rooster stranded by flooding in the paddock

As we prepare for a well deserved Spring Break, please take a moment to appreciate and share a little self-congratulations on what we have accomplished together. This community of 1,500 students, families, and staff make individual choices each day to collectively keep our community safe, and to positively impact the world.

We started the year with the theme, “Together, we’ve got this,” and together we have.  As we return from Break and gear-up for end-of-year rites and celebrations, let’s double down on that which brought us to this place: kōkua, the sacrificial giving of oneself that others might thrive.