Kamehameha Schools parents have mixed feelings about sheriffs... - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Kamehameha Schools parents have mixed feelings about sheriffs on campus

Joseph Aipoalani Joseph Aipoalani
Luwella Leonardi Luwella Leonardi

By Minna Sugimoto - bio | email

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Parents of Kamehameha Schools students are expressing mixed feelings about the presence of state sheriffs on the Kapalama campus. Many say they should have learned about the heightened security from the school first, not through the news.

Special-duty sheriffs are providing additional security this week. Based on the coverage request, it's at a cost of nearly $5,000.

Schools officials say it's simply a test in response to a potential security concern on campus last month, and that there is no current threat.

Hawaii News Now obtained a copy of an internal memo that highlighted concerns about a Kamehameha Schools graduate, who was recently denied permission to speak at an assembly. The 20-year-old man was arrested last month for alleged firearms offenses.

The memo from the schools' risk management director said, in part, "Given the possibility of this denial triggering a negative, possibly violent response from him, several preventative and protective measures have been put into place."

Schools officials call the media coverage "inflammatory."

"How much do you think parents should be told about what's going on?" this reporter asked.

"One hundred percent of what's going on would be perfect," Joseph Aipoalani, parent of a Kamehameha student, said. "I mean, we need to know what's going on with the school, our kids are safe. It's good for the extra security, but just to know what it's there for would be nice to know."

"They have to rise to the level of what's going on in the world, so I have no problem with the security," Luwella Leonardi, grandparent of a Kamehameha student, said.

Schools president Michael Chun sent an e-mail to parents about the increased security Wednesday. Some parents who were upset about the notification delay declined on-camera interviews, saying they fear retaliation.


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