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Cody new head of school at Pacific Buddhist Academy


Pacific Buddhist Academy, a college preparatory high school, has chosen Rob Cody as its new head of school, to replace Pieper Toyama. Toyama is retiring in June from the school he helped found a decade ago.

Originally from New York, Cody is now the principal of Northbridge International School Cambodia in Phnom Penh, where he implemented the International Baccalaureate curriculum and promoted personal growth and service among his students.

Pacific Buddhist Academy, the only Shin Buddhist high school in the United States, is open to teens regardless of faith. It offers a curriculum designed to foster Buddhist values of gratitude, compassion and respect for each individual, rather than the typical educational model focused on high-pressure tests.

On Wednesday, it will host a free screening of the documentary “Race to Nowhere,” followed by a panel discussion. The film takes at look at the price paid by students who are pushed to chase perfection, including stress-related illness, cheating, depression and burnout. It calls on the community to re-examine how best to prepare youth for healthy and bright futures.

The event will be held at the Honpa Hongwanji Betsuin Annex Temple from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. and is cosponsored by the Hawaii Association of Independent Schools. The panel includes Dr. Lynn Yanagihara, a pediatrician; Lyla Berg, an educator and former state representative; parent Ann Sueoka; and Toyama, the head of school. 

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