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How to Apply

Thank you again for interest in Pacific Buddhist Academy. At PBA we try to ease the application process by allowing you to apply and submit all documentation online. Should you need any additional assistance, please contact our Director of Admissions at Blanche Yarnell or call (808) 532-2649.


Students and their families who are interested in learning more about PBA should submit an online inquiry form. Someone from our admission team will contact you as soon as possible. 


If you’re ready to apply, please complete the online application.

Families who submit an online application will receive a call from our Director of Admissions to arrange visit to PBA and an interview. The purpose of this visit is to provide the student with the opportunity to experience life as PBA student.

Applications Requirements:

  1. Complete online application form.
    • There is no deadline for rolling admissions.
    • Prospective 9th grade families interested in PBA are encouraged to apply before mid-February. Please contact our admission office to inquire about availability after the deadline.
  2. $55.00 non-refundable application fee
  3. Teacher reference form
  4. A copy of the applicant’s birth certificate
  5. Current transcripts
  6. Most recent standardized test scores. (i.e. SSAT, PSAT, ERB – if applicable).
    • Test scores are not required but highly recommended.
    • For students taking the SSAT, PBA’s member code is: #5629
  7. Assessment results for any learning challenges (i.e. AD(H)D, Dyslexia, etc. – if applicable). 
Register for SSAT

  • Test scores are not required but highly recommended.
  • For students taking the SSAT, PBA’s member code is: #5629

Register for the SSAT  

Teacher References

Teacher Reference Report is a valuable part of the admission evaluation. A teacher’s candid comments about the application are especially helpful to the selection committee. The reference report allows PBA to learn more about the student’s learning challenges and how we may adjust our curriculum to best fit the student’s needs. Teacher reference reports can be completed through the online application. 

Transcript & Report Card

Transcripts and report cards allows the selection committee to analyze how well the applicant does in academics.  However, we do not solely base our decision on grades alone. We enroll students based on how well they would excel in our environment and provide a positive contribution to the community.  You can upload transcripts and report cards through the online application. 


The Visit

PBA believes that there is only so much that can be learned about a candidate from a collection of standardized test scores, grades, essays, and recent teacher reflections. For this reason, one of the most important aspects of our Admissions process is a visitation day in which a prospective student and his or her family have an opportunity to introduce themselves - and to be introduced - to PBA. Below, please find a list of frequently asked questions. Familiarizing yourself with these details in advance of the visit will insure that the day goes smoothly.

Q. Is a visitation day really a requirement?

A. Yes. We will not consider a candidate for admission unless he/she has spent a day on campus. We will make exceptions for families residing on outer-islands, the mainland, or internationally; but otherwise, this is a required component. 

Q. Will my child have to miss school to come visit PBA?

A. Yes. But don’t worry. Schools routinely provide excused absences for students to visit a school that the student is considering attending. The best thing to do is call your child’s school, provide the date, and request an excused absence.

Q. Does my child have to apply before she/he visits?

A. We prefer if candidates apply in advance of the visit. The application is an opportunity for PBA to learn more about each student so that the visitation day can be tailored to his/her specific interests. In addition, collecting information before the visit allows us to match the student with a host with similar interests and experiences.

Q. Who should attend the visit?

A. Candidates will spend all day on campus. We also will schedule a meeting with parents/guardians and the Head of School either in the morning after drop off, or in the afternoon just before dismissal. 

Q. What should my son/daughter wear to school that day?

A. Our dress code is relaxed but respectful. Boys can wear shorts, jeans or slacks and a t-shirt or aloha shirt. Please just make sure his shirt does not have any messages of violence, intolerance, or substances that are not legal or age appropriate. Girls can wear shorts, jeans, slacks or skirts that are of appropriate length. Shirts should not be low cut or expose midriffs.

Q. What is a typical visitation day schedule?

A. The prospective student and his/her family usually arrive at PBA by 8:30 a.m. We will spend about thirty minutes providing information about the school and the kinds of things your child will experience during his/her visit. Core classes are hosted in the morning (math, science, language arts, social studies and foreign language), and electives classes are hosted in the afternoon (art, music, drama, fitness, newspaper, etc.). Your child will spend most of the day in the class corresponding with his/her intended point of entry. However, during the electives blocks, visiting students are shown all course offerings available that day.   

Q. Does my child need to bring lunch?

A. No. Lunch is on PBA! Please let us know before the visit if your son/daughter prefers a vegetarian lunch.

Q. My child is not Buddhist. Will he/she have to participate in any religious experiences?

Most of our students are not Buddhist. What makes us a Buddhist school is the fact that we have drawn from Buddhist philosophy a collection of values that are at the core of our teaching, learning and interaction. These values are universal and found in many faiths. They include compassion, gratitude, interdependence, wisdom, among others. It is likely that during the visit s/he will have an opportunity to practice or reflect on his/her own values as well as the values of the school, but probably not in an overtly religious context. The one exception is on Fridays when we have our weekly Temple service. All students are encouraged, but not required, to participate in singing, chanting, and to pay attention to the messages that are shared. The only requirement is that they are present and respectful. 

Q. What time does the visit conclude?

A. We like to host a family interview usually from 3-3:30 p.m. The Head of School conducts the interview, and the family and candidate are all participants. This is as much an opportunity for you to learn about the school as it is for us to learn about you, so please feel free to ask questions. 

Q. Who will my son/daughter spend the day with?

A. PBA orients current students to be hosts for prospective students. Hosts are instructed to provide a student perspective of life at the school, and candidates are encouraged to ask every question they might have: “Is the food good? Is this school hard? Do you have lots of homework? etc.”

Q. Is there anything I can do to prepare my child for the visit?

A. Yes. First, encourage them to be themselves. Second, we believe that it is inevitable that every new student will change the dynamic of the school - that PBA will be a different place because your child is in it. Our expectation is that every new student contributes to our community such that that impact is a beneficial one. On the morning of their visit candidates are asked, “Based on what you observe during the school day, if you became a student at PBA, what would you bring to the community that would make us better?” Candidates are invited to share their answers during the afternoon interview. Informing your child of this expectation ahead of time will help insure that s/he are prepared to think and share in this way.

Q. My child is not the most outgoing person, and he/she is nervous about the visit. What can I tell him/her?

A. Most students who attend a visitation day are nervous at first, regardless of how extroverted they are. But because the school is small, students are warmly welcomed by peers and instructors alike. As a result, visiting students quickly begin to feel at home, and relationships begin to form before they are ever even admitted or enrolled. Prospective students are never left unaccompanied by their hosts, and they know where to go and who to see should they encounter any issues during the day.   

Q. What is the best way for me to check-in with my child during the day?

A. We encourage parents to refrain from relying on their child’s cell to make contact with them throughout the day. Calling or texting your son/daughter can disrupt classes as well as their participation in the visit. Of course, in the case of an emergency, you should reach your child by any means necessary, and you can always call the school.