Court Will Reconsider Kamehameha Admissions Policy

Dee Jay Mailer
Dee Jay Mailer

(KHNL) There is word Kamehameha schools will have a second chance to uphold it's Hawaiians-only admissions policy. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to re-hear a legal challenge to the policy.

School officials say they are encouraged and hopeful. They say this is a sign that the courts believe there are important arguments to be heard. A new larger panel of Ninth Circuit Court judges will re-hear this case. The panel will be made up of 15 judges.

Last August, a three judge panel overturned the school's admissions policy which gives admissions preference to applicants of Hawaiian ancestry. School officials had vowed to seek a rehearing. CEO Dee Jay Mailer says she is encouraged 15 fresh sets of eyes will be looking at this policy, which follows the wishes of one woman, Princess Pauahi Bishop to educate children of Hawaiian ancestry.

"She set it up as a private will in order to help her children. And for someone to translate that into racial discrimination is just appalling to us. It's wrong. so of course we're going to react with glee, when the court says we will hear that argument again." said Mailer.

In a written statement today state Attorney General Mark Bennett says he's happy the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to revisit this case. So far, no date has been set for the re-hearing but school officials say we should hear very soon.