St. Francis School makes history - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

St. Francis School makes history

Sosuia Havea Sosuia Havea
Kayla Andes Kayla Andes
Joan of Arc Souza Joan of Arc Souza

By Howard Dashefsky - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) The new year at St. Francis School got underway in near typical fashion this morning.

The normal combination of apprehension, excitement, and hugs.

But there was one new element thrown into the mix.  For the first time in it's 85 year history, the high school welcomed boys.

"I guess it's a good thing for me" said Freshman Sosuia Havea. "But I don't know how the other boys think of it."

Havea is one of 17 young men that help make up the freshman class of 82 students. A quick math lesson tells you he and his buddies are outnumbered three to one.

"Usually they come up to me and tell me I'm tall and then kind of distract me" said Havea. "But I guess but I think it's good."

The small Manoa school first started admitted boys to kindergarten in 2006. Then middle school grades followed suit the past three years.

But high school boys?  That changes everything.

"Everybody is going to get dressed real nice for school" said Freshman Kayla Andes. "We need to make sure we look good, have their hair nice, put on a little make-up, make sure they comb their hair in the morning."

"These young ladies have to behave as young ladies because there are gentlemen in the class" said head of school Joan of Arc Souza. "So I think both genders mellow each other."

Souza says the new co-ed high school will help develop more well rounded young adults, so long as the boys follow two basic rules.

Be gentlemen and treat everyone with respect.

As for the girls:

"The girls are always going to dominate" said Andes.  "It's an all girls school, it started that way and it's still going to be known for that for a while."

But while the girls may rule, the boys are sitting pretty. Even if the odds aren't stacked in their favor.

A fact even the head of school knows.

"The girls rule" said Souza. "But the boys have the pick of the litter."

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