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Uehiro Academy for Philosophy and Ethics in Education

February 11, 2014
  • Kahu Cordell Kekoa blesses the community ball – a symbol of p4c Hawai‘i – with Governor Neil Abercrombie and UH Uehiro Academy Director Dr. Thomas Jackson.
During the Dalai Lama’s 2012 visit to Hawaiʻi, the world witnessed how students have embraced mindfulness and ethical questioning – elements that have been integrated into their classroom experience through p4c.

Watch a summary of that visit:

On Jan. 15, 2014, the University of Hawai‘i Foundation, the UH Mānoa chancellor, and the dean of the College of Arts and Humanities hosted a gathering to bless the new University of Hawai‘i Uehiro Academy for Philosophy and Ethics in Education. The creation of the academy is the direct result of the pledge of $1.25 million in 2012 from the Uehiro Foundation for Ethics and Education in Japan.

The academy is located in the College of Arts & Humanities and is home to philosophy for children Hawai‘i (p4c HI), an innovative approach to education that is used by many educators in Hawai‘i, Japan and other locations around the world.

Premiere p4c HI implementation sites on Oʻahu are Waikīkī Elementary School, Waimānalo Elementary and Intermediate, and Kailua High School. During the Dalai Lama’s 2012 visit to Hawai‘i, the world witnessed how an entire school embraced mindfulness and ethical inquiry, elements that have been integrated into their school culture.

p4c HI is based on the premise that philosophy comes naturally to those who continue to wonder about the world and that the process of philosophical inquiry holds valuable lessons for becoming good thinkers. Since bringing p4c to Hawai‘i in 1984, Dr. Thomas Jackson has linked UH Mānoa resources with those of the Hawai‘i State Department of Education to help create intellectually safe environments where students and teachers learn to inquire together more deeply into topics and questions that arise out of their engagement with the subject matter at hand.

The establishment of the Uehiro Academy greatly enhances the possibilities for supporting research and education into the development of intellectually safe communities of philosophical inquiry in our classrooms, schools and beyond.

L-R: Uehiro Foundation on Ethics & Education Secretary General Noboru Maruyama, Governor Neil Abercrombie and Franklin Mukai

L-R: Buffy Cushman-Patz, Amber Makaiau, Deb Mascia and Thomas Jackson

If you would like to learn how you can support UH students and programs like this, please contact us at 808-956-8700 or send us a message.