Statewide Community Meetings on Improving Public Education

The Hawaii State Department of Education (DOE) and Board of Education (BOE) have scheduled a series of community meetings to provide updates on plans to better public education.  These meetings are part of the ongoing outreach effort in the updating of the Strategic Plan.

Student Success

Student success is at the core of the DOE/BOE Strategic Plan, which sets targets for progress tied to three goals. Earlier this year, the DOE/BOE embarked on a review and extension of the plan.

“We have sought input from students, teachers, school leaders, parents, employers and community members and their feedback is an important component as we move forward,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi.  “Additionally, we are reviewing our student data, and the output of the Governor’s team on the Every Student Succeeds Act. Based on the collective feedback, we will develop new strategies to support student success.”

“A lot of work has been done and we want to share this information with our school communities and education stakeholders,” added BOE Chairman Lance Mizumoto.  “We encourage anyone interested in public education to attend our meetings to learn about our efforts.”

Staff from DOE will be collecting community members’ perspectives on the draft Strategic Plan priorities, which will also be used to inform the Plan’s review and extension.

The Governor’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Team is also sharing information about new opportunities under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act. Hawaii’s state plan for ESSA will be informed by the Strategic Plan.

For more information about the Strategic Plan or ESSA, please visit HawaiiPublicSchools.org.

Hawai‘i Island

AUG. 3, 2016 BOE Community Meeting at Kanu o ka ʻĀina Learning ʻOhana,
Hālau Hoʻolako Building, ʻOluʻOlu Room. Address: 65-1043 Hiʻiaka Street, Waimea.
5-6:30 p.m.
AUG. 17, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Kealakehe High School.
Address: 74-5000 Puohulihuli St, Kailua-Kona. 4:30-6:30 p.m.
AUG. 24, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Waiakea High School.
Address: 155 W Kawili Street, Hilo. 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Kaua‘i

AUG. 24, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School.
Address: 4431 Nuhou Street, Lihue. 4:30-6:30 p.m.
SEPT. 14, 2016 Board of Education Community Meeting, Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School.
Address: 4431 Nuhou Street, Lihue. 5-6:30 p.m.

O‘ahu

AUG. 2, 2016 Board of Education, General Business Meeting, 1390 Miller Street, Boardroom, 4th floor
AUG. 10, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Kalani High School.
Address: 4680 Kalanianaole Hwy, Honolulu. 6-8 p.m.
AUG. 16, 2016 Board of Education, General Business Meeting, 1390 Miller Street, Boardroom, 4th floor
AUG. 22, 2016 Board of Education community meeting, Kailua High School library.
Address: 451 Ulumanu Drive, Kailua. 5-6:30 p.m. (tentative)
AUG. 31, 2016 Board of Education community meeting, Manoa or Liliha public library.
5-6:30 p.m. (tentative)
SEPT. 6, 2016 Board of Education, General Business Meeting, 1390 Miller Street, Boardroom, 4th floor
SEPT. 7, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Castle High School.
Address: 45-386 Kaneohe Bay Drive, Kaneohe. 6-8 p.m.
SEPT. 14, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Moanalua High School.
Address: 2825 Ala Ilima Street, Honolulu. 6-8 p.m.
SEPT. 15, 2016 Board of Education community meeting, Waianae Public Library.
Address: 85-625 Farrington Hwy, Waianae. 5-6:30 p.m.
SEPT. 20, 2016 Board of Education, General Business Meeting, 1390 Miller Street, Boardroom, 4th floor

Maui

AUG. 8, 2016 BOE Community Meeting at the Baldwin High School Library.
Address: 1650 Ka‘ahumanu Hwy, Wailuku.
5-6:30 pm (tentative)
SEPT. 7, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Maui High School.
Address: 660 Lono Avenue, Kahului. 4:30-6:30 p.m.

Moloka‘i

AUG. 27, 2016 Governor’s ESSA Team Town Hall Meeting, Moloka‘i High School.
Address: 2140 Farrington Avenue, Ho’olehua. 1-3 p.m.

 

Hawaii Department of Education Advises on Heat Safety

With the new school year beginning Aug. 1, the Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) reminds schools and parents about health guidance on preventing heat illness.

Portable ACs installed as temporary supplemental cooling in some of Hawaii's hottest classrooms.

Portable ACs installed as temporary supplemental cooling in some of Hawaii’s hottest classrooms.

“We have been working hard to cool classrooms across the state, however, with increased heat and humidity, it’s important to revisit tips on preventing heat exhaustion,” stated Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “In addressing heat concerns, we met with Principals to discuss options of moving students to cooler areas of their campuses if necessary.”

Next week, letters from HIDOE and the Department of Health will be sent home to parents providing health recommendations, which include helping students prepare for hot days.

A year ago, high temperatures prompted HIDOE to post Heat-Related Guidelines in all classrooms and school offices. Those guidelines are also posted on the Department’s website.

Meanwhile, HIDOE’s heat abatement efforts have resulted in more than 400 portable classrooms with heat reflective materials, 139 classrooms installed with ceiling fans, 109 classrooms equipped with portable ACs, and upgrades to electrical systems at schools across the state.

Work towards the Governor’s goal of installing air conditioning units in 1,000 classrooms is also ongoing. Learn more about the ongoing heat abatement projects.

Jimmy Yagi Summer Hoops Camp Moving to UHH Gym Due to Tropical Storm Darby

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation will move next week’s Jimmy Yagi Summer Hoops Camp to the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo Gymnasium.

Yagi

All children participating in the camp should report to the UHH Gym, located at 200 West Kāwili Street in Hilo, at 8 a.m. Tuesday, July 26, for registration and the opening day of the camp.

The new venue will replace the Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium, which has been reserved for another event that must be postponed to protect attendees from the anticipated impacts of Tropical Storm Darby.

The Department of Parks and Recreation thanks the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo for allowing its gymnasium to be used for the Jimmy Yagi Summer Hoops Camp. The department also apologizes for any inconvenience the venue change may cause and thanks camp participants and their families for their understanding.

For more information, please contact Jason Armstrong, Public Information Officer, at 961-8311 or jarmstrong@hawaiicounty.gov.

Supreme Court Reverses Connections School Employee’s Ethics Code Violations

This morning, the Hawaii State Supreme Court issued its decision reversing the Hawaii State Ethics Commission’s finding that Eric Boyd, from Connections Charter School in Hilo, violated the State Code of Ethics for purchases made in 2007.

Eric Boyd

Eric Boyd

In 2010, the State Ethics Commission charged Eric Boyd with twenty-six (26) counts of violating the State Ethics Code.  In 2012, the Ethics Commission amended the charge and reduced the charges to twenty (20).   After a two day hearing, the Ethics Commission found that Boyd violated the State Ethics Code and imposed the maximum fine of $10,000 and a recommended to the Governor that Mr. Boyd be terminated on February 8, 2013.

Boyd appealed the Commission’s decision to the Third Circuit Court which reduced the number of violations to nine and imposed a fine of $4,500, which Boyd paid.  Both Boyd and Ethics Commission appealed to the Intermediate Court of Appeals.  On August 19, 2015, the Intermediate Court of Appeals denied Boyd’s appeal and reinstated all charges and penalties.

After six (6) years of defending himself, the Hawaii State Supreme agreed with Mr. Boyd and ordered the Commission to dismiss all charges against Boyd.  Boyd said that he is profoundly grateful the Supreme Court heard his case.  Boyd noted that although this case had a devastating effect on his personal and professional life, he had to prove to his children and family, that what he did and how he did it, was the proper way to do things.  “The lesson of my case is to fight for what you believe in and it is something I teach my kids everyday,”  Boyd said.  “I am also grateful that Ted Hong, my attorney, was always been at my side and believed in me.”

When asked for comment, Ted Hong, an attorney in Hilo, noted that the Commission under the former leadership of Mr. Leslie Kondo and Ms. Maria Sullivan, should have listened to their argument about jurisdiction from the beginning “instead of ruining Eric’s life and dragging his name through the mud for the past six (6) years.”  Mr. Hong also noted that no state agency, including its officers and board members are above the law.  “We are humbly grateful that the  Supreme Court took a careful look at the arguments that we made.”

Robotics and STEM Events Receive Funding From Hawaiian Electric

sgcAs part of its 2016 second quarter contributions, the Hawaiian Electric Companies have donated $20,000 to the Hawaii Space Grant Consortium for the:

  • Pan Pacific VEX (high school) and VEX IQ (elementary and middle school) Championships, Oct. 7-9 at Kamehameha Schools Kapalama Campus Kekuhaupio Gym. Initiated in 2008 as a means to have Hawaii teams participate in an international robotics tournament, the Pan Pacific VEX has hosted more than 100 teams from China, Taiwan, the U.S. mainland and Hawaii, growing to become at one time the second largest VEX tournament in the world. The Hawaiian Electric Companies’ support will help to reinstate the Pan Pacific VEX Championship which has not been held for the past two years.
  • Astronaut Lacy Veach Day of Discovery, Oct. 29 at Punahou School. The event honors the late Astronaut Charles Lacy Veach who considered Honolulu his home, and promotes interest in science and technology among educators, students and their families. The 2016 event will include hands-on workshops, displays and a VEX IQ qualifying robotics tournament involving 18 school teams. Hawaiian Electric is a founding sponsor of the event that was first held in 2002. Company employees continue to actively participate in providing workshops, a display and volunteers at the event.
  • 2016-17 Hawaiian Electric Companies Hawaii State High School and Middle School VEX Championships, featuring the high school event on Jan. 5, 2017 at Keaau High School on Hawaii Island, and the middle school event on Jan. 7, 2017 at Stevenson Middle School on Oahu. In these team-based games, first held in 2013, students must design, build and control their robots to participate in various skills challenges that demonstrate their grasp of STEM concepts. The event will qualify teams to participate in the 2017 Worlds VEX Championships.

To date in 2016, the Hawaiian Electric Companies have provided more than $60,000 in corporate contributions to advance STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) learning and enrichment programs for Hawaii students and educators, including math and science bowls, engineering and science fairs, education summits, robotic programs, and STEM projects and events.

Company employees also volunteer countless hours to provide student mentoring as well as staffing at robotic tournaments, science, engineering and math fairs, and other related events. Hawaiian Electric has supported STEM programs and initiatives in Hawaii for more than 30 years and contributed more than $1 million during that time.

Gov. Ige Supports Foster Youth and Resource Caregivers with Bill Signing

During the 2016 legislative session, Department of Human Services (DHS) advocated alongside the community for two bills that expand the opportunities for young people to discover who they are through education and experiences, supported by people who care for them. On June 29, Governor David Ige signed into law these two pieces of legislation.

Gov. Ige stands beside young people, legislators, community members, DHS staff and other state employees after signing HB2350 and SB2878 into law.

Gov. Ige stands beside young people, legislators, community members, DHS staff and other state employees after signing HB2350 and SB2878 into law.

In a bill signing ceremony, Gov. Ige first signed House Bill 2350 into law as Act 133. This law supports resource caregivers, giving them more discretion to allow youth to participate in activities that will help them grow, learn, and thrive. Additionally, Gov. Ige signed Senate Bill 2878 into law as Act 134. This law extends the application period for former foster youth to access higher education benefits to age 26 and supports Imua Kākou, helping ease the transition for foster youth to adulthood.

The two laws brought together the community, DHS, and the very young people whose lives are impacted by the bills to work with legislators and stress the importance of these supports. The legislature’s passage and governor’s signing of these laws demonstrate the power of these young people and our government’s commitment to supporting them. The two laws represent shared commitment across the community and the three State of Hawai‘i branches of government, which was displayed in each branch’s presence at the bill signing ceremony.

Early Registration Fee for Jimmy Yagi Summer Hoops Camp Extended

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation is extending the discounted early-registration fee for its 4th Annual Jimmy Yagi Summer Hoops Camp that returns to Hilo July 26-29.

Yagi

Parents who have not yet signed up their keiki may still take advantage of the reduced $60 per-child entry fee that was to have expired July 13.   New registrations will be accepted up until the first day of camp July 26.

Registration forms are available at the Department’s Recreation office located within Aunty Sally Kaleohano’s Lū‘au Hale at 799 Pi‘ilani Street in Hilo, county gyms, and online at http://www.hawaiicounty.gov/pr-recreation/.

Please make checks payable to the “County Director of Finance” and include the note “Jimmy Yagi Summer Hoops Camp.”

The Jimmy Yagi Summer Hoops Camp is named in honor of the legendary former UH-Hilo men’s basketball coach who helped guide the Vulcans-Hawai‘i Basketball School for 37 years. Open to boys and girls 9 to 17 years old, the camp will be held at the Afook-Chinen Civic Auditorium and the Pana‘ewa Covered Play Courts, which feature new flooring.

A team of coaches will instruct and supervise campers as they practice agility, ball-handling and other drills during morning skill sessions.
Following a lunch break, players will showcase what they’ve learned by competing in games expected to last until about 3:30 p.m. each day. Special awards will be presented to outstanding participants at the close of the four-day camp.

FREE to First 120 Children – ‘Aha Pai’ea Keiki Sports Challenge at UH Hilo

The annual ‘Aha Pai’ea Keiki Sports Challenge is slated for Saturday, August 27 at the University of Hawai’i at Hilo Athletic complex.
Keiki Challenge at UHH
Hosted by the UH Hilo Vulcan Athletic Department and the Vulcan Booster Club, the challenge runs from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. It is FREE and limited to first 120 children 7-12 years old to register. Lunch, beverages and a t-shirt will be provided.

Registration forms are available by clicking on link below, emailing vulcansathletics@gmail.com or calling Vulcan Booster Club ‘Aha Pai’ea Coordinator Ed Torrison at 808-987-3215.

Through the course of the day, participants need to be prepared for vigorous physical activity and should bring a water bottle, running shoes and wear comfortable attire. Various activities are scheduled in baseball, basketball, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball.

For more information call 808-987-3215.

Registration form

Kamehameha Schools Hawaii Adds Another School

This past school year, poʻokula Kāhealani Naeʻole-Wong announced a new redesign to its campus outreach department to equip and align the campus’ fourth kula (school), Hālau Kupukupu, with the structure needed to ensure critical alignment with Kūhanauna (SP2020).

One of the program's courses, called Kinder-gardeners, lets kindergarten aged keiki explore the power of observation as they plan, plant, and harvest a māla (garden).

One of the program’s courses, called Kinder-gardeners, lets kindergarten aged keiki explore the power of observation as they plan, plant, and harvest a māla (garden).

The changes were made in order to enhance the campus’ ability to:

  • Incubate innovation for model 21st century Hawaiian learning environments,
  • Provide a system of support and engagement for the campus, ‘ohana, and community, and
  • Emerge as a strong partner to meet identified campus, regional and Network of Native Hawaiian School goals.

Kupukupu means “to sprout or grow” as leaves, blossoms, knowledge and ideas. As such, Hālau Kupukupu offers a number of dynamic Hawaiian culture-based landscape of educational opportunities that inspire young learners as they sprout, grow and mature into good and industrious learners and the next generation of ‘ōiwi leaders who will steward the future.

Karen Hayashida, Hauʻoli Motta and Rochelle Yamashita of Hālau Kupukupu.

Karen Hayashida, Hauʻoli Motta and Rochelle Yamashita of Hālau Kupukupu.

One of Hālau Kupukupu’s largest and most visible undertakings is the campus’ Summer Innovations Academy, currently in its second year. Hālau Kupukupu Innovations Academy built upon the foundation laid by the school’s previous summer school program, Kula Kauwela, with exciting and innovative programs.

Hālau Kupukupu nurtures a sense of exploration and wonder with dynamic, ʻāina and culture-based learning activities.

Hālau Kupukupu nurtures a sense of exploration and wonder with dynamic, ʻāina and culture-based learning activities.

The Summer Innovations Academy offers incredible learning opportunities where students explore and celebrate the resources and wonders of Moku O Keawe. Through exciting intersections of Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Math (STEAM), haumāna and kumu learn and grow together in robust educational experiences that ignite passion for learning, curiosity, innovative thinking, and deeper aloha for our ʻāina, lāhui, and world.

Leading Hālau Kupukupu is Joy “Hau‘oli” Motta, who serves as po‘okumu for the kula.

“Our summer program is focused on guiding learners through rigorous and engaging ʻŌiwi STEAM inquiries while applying Hawaiian thinking in transformative ways,” shares Motta.

“Our haumāna aren’t just in the classroom. They are exploring the wonderful natural living laboratory of our ʻāina and working alongside practitioners, environmental scientists and engineers and industry leaders to innovate and design possible solutions to relevant challenges that impact our ʻāina and community.”

Motta, who had served as the campus outreach project coordinator over the past two years, will now have kuleana for the planning, integration, design, implementation, and evaluation of key educational programming and strategies which achieve the learner and community-building objectives of Hālau Kupukupu for KS Hawaiʻi and the broader Kūhanauna.

In this capacity, she also serves as KS Hawaiʻi’s point of contact for the Network of Native Hawaiian Schools and the broader Hawaiʻi Island region.

The realignment also shifted key staff into important support roles for this work.

Rochelle Yamashita supports Hālau Kupukupu as its Learning and Innovations Officer. In this role, Yamashita provides leadership support in program design, implementation, and assessment of learning needs including K-12, adult and educator growth and development.

Karen Hayashida serves as Hālau Kupukupu’s Manager of Support Services, where she continues to develop, establish, and oversee cross-functional systems and processes for all Hālau Kupukupu programmatic support and operations.

In addition to the Summer Innovations Academy, Hālau Kupukupu will help to develop new programming that will support campus’ continued growth in Hawaiian cultural perspectives. The school will also continue to support and sustain the positive momentum of the Kumuola Marine Science Education Center project and other extended learning opportunities with the campus’ valued community partners.

Shana Logan Shares “The Meaning of Aloha” at Free Brown Bag Talk

The non-profit Ku‘ikahi Mediation Center hosts a free talk on July 21 as part of their “Finding Solutions, Growing Peace” Brown Bag Lunch Series.  Talks are Third Thursdays from 12 noon to 1 pm in the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney at 655 Kilauea Avenue in Hilo.

This month’s speaker is Shana Logan on “The Meaning of Aloha” and traditional Hawaiian practices of peace.

Click to read

Click to read

The Aloha Spirit Law (HRS 5-7.5) and Ke Kanawai Mamalahoe (Article 9, Sec. 10 of the Hawai‘i State Constitution) are important historical edicts that can be powerful tools in resolving today’s legal and ethical issues–through traditional, peaceful practices in the operations and decisions of government and in the personal lives of its citizens,” says Logan.

In this talk, Logan shares her mana‘o on the literal and metaphorical meanings of Aloha and accompanying Hawaiian values.

Shana Logan is a native Hawaiian writer and educator.  She is the owner of Aloha Consultants, a small local media company based in Hilo.  She received her bachelor’s degree in Communications from Hawai’i Pacific University and a Liberal Arts associate’s degree with an emphasis in Hawaiian Studies from the University of Hawai’i Windward Community College.

Ku‘ikahi’s Brown Bag Lunch Series is free and open to the public.  Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lunch, enjoy an informal and educational talk-story session, and meet others interested in “Finding Solutions, Growing Peace.”

This lunch-and-learn series is made possible thanks in part to funding from the Atherton Family Foundation.  For more information, contact Ku‘ikahi Administrative & Program Assistant Jenifer Aveiro at 935-7844 x 1 or jenifer@hawaiimediation.org.  Or visit www.hawaiimediaiton.org.

Governor’s Every Student Succeeds Act Conference Draws Over a Thousand Participants

Gov. David Ige and the Governor’s Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Team hosted more than a thousand participants at the team’s first public conference today.

Governor Ige ProfileThe governor and ESSA Team invited students, teachers, principals, parents, education, business and community leaders as well as other interested stakeholders to the one-day summit at the Hawai‘i Convention Center.

The conference offered opportunities to learn about ESSA and current best practices from inspiring thought leaders, policy experts and education leaders.

Participants also had the opportunity to engage in a variety of forums on key education topics and issues, as well as collaborate with others on innovative possibilities for a future-focused education system in Hawai‘i.

“As other states begin to implement the Every Student Succeeds Act, they are looking to Hawai‘i as Gov. Ige gives every citizen a voice to help determine the future of their education system. The Governor’s ESSA Summit is a first step for Hawai‘i’s students, principals, parents and teachers to accelerate education innovation in every classroom,” said Stephen Parker, Legislative Director, National Governors Association.

The ESSA Team hoped the summit lead to a shared vision for Hawai‘i’s public education, a deeper understanding of ESSA and a wide range of ideas and possibilities for a future focused public education system. The team also collected valuable input and feedback for preliminary design ideas as the team creates a blueprint for Hawai‘i’s education system.


AGENDA:

7:00     Registration

7:50     Opening

8:00     Welcome by Jade Raquel, Grade 11, McKinley High School

8:05     Welcome Message – DOE Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi

8:10     Welcome Message –  BOE Chairperson Lance Mizumoto

8:15     ESSA Presentation –  U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander, Peter Oppenheim, Education Policy Director, and Lindsay Fryer, Education Policy

Counsel

8:25     Summit Keynote – Governor David Ige

8:55     Summit Keynote – Ken Kay, EdLeader 21

9:55     ESSA Presentation – Lee Posey, National Conference of State Legislatures

10:10   BREAK

10:30   Concurrent Session #1 (choice of breakout session)

11:25   Concurrent Session #2 (choice of breakout session)

12:20   LUNCH

12:50   Concurrent Session #3 – Listening and Learning Session – collecting input and feedback

2:45     ESSA Message – Stephen Parker, National Governors Association

3:05     Closing Message –  First Lady Dawn Ige

3:20     EVALUATION AND CLOSING

Hawaii Island Festival of Birds Adds Events

The Hawai’i Island Festival of Birds has added more events and speakers to its plans. The Festival, scheduled for the weekend of September 24-25 at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay, includes on site events on Saturday and field trips on Sunday.

Photo by Jack Jeffrey

Photo by Jack Jeffrey

Saturday’s workshops, including special programs for children, will be highlighted by talks from Brian Sullivan, project leader for the Cornell Lab of Ornithology for eBird.org, Dr. Chris Farmer, Hawaii program director for the American Bird Conservancy, and a panel discussion by the Hawaii Forest Bird Survey crew. Noah Gomes, park ranger at Volcanoes National Park will also speak about traditional Hawaiian featherwork.

Saturday’s program options include a hands-on Photography Workshop with professional photographer Jack Jeffrey and a block-printing workshop with artist Gretchen Grove. Materials will be provided.

Saturday night’s Gala Dinner will be headlined by Dr. Sam Gon III speaking on the cultural and biological significance of Hawaii’s unique bird life.

A highlight of the first-ever Festival is Sunday’s “sneak peek” of the newly created Hawai’i Island Coast to Coast Birding Trail with field-trip van departures from the east end, at Hilo, or from the west, Kailua-Kona. Other options are a pelagic (sea) birding trip with biologist guides Brian Sullivan, Mike Scott and Lance Tanino, or a bird photography field trip with Jack Jeffrey.

“We are very pleased with the excellent reception we’ve had so far,” said Rob Pacheco (Hawaii Forest & Trail). “Not only are we enrolling participants from Hawaii, but birders from across the U.S. Mainland have expressed great interest in our program. The Festival is a boon to Hawai’i tourism, and it also will give our keiki (children) a chance to learn more about the nature of Hawai’i, with the help of experts who will be joining us to teach at the Festival. ”

Festival sponsors include Hawaii Tourism Authority, County of Hawaii, Alaska Airlines, Audubon Magazine, Hawaii Forest and Trail, Destination Marketing and others.

For more information and Festival registration, please visit the website hawaiibirdingtrails.com. Book before August 1st to take advantage of early-bird pricing for all Festival components.

Neighbor Island Town Hall Meetings to Hear About ESSA

Senator Michelle Kidani (Dist. 18 – Mililani Town, portion of Waipi‘o Gentry, Waikele, Village Park, Royal Kunia), Chair of the Senate Committee on Education, will travel to three neighbor islands next week for a series of public Town Hall meetings to discuss new Federal education legislation.

Senator Michelle Kidani

Senator Michelle Kidani

When fully implemented, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) will affect the way teachers, students and campus leadership interact and conduct public school instruction.

“It’s important that the public understand and have some input about how schools are educating our youngsters,” Senator Kidani said.  “I have invited education policy expert Lee Posey from the National Conference of State Legislatures to be a guest speaker at our Town Hall sessions.  I’ve heard her presentations, and they provide an excellent overview of ESSA and how the new law can benefit the state.”

As Education Chair, Senator Kidani is a member of Governor David Ige’s ESSA Team that has scheduled a public forum this weekend at the Hawai‘i Convention Center.  Lee Posey will also be a presenter at this Saturday’s forum before proceeding to the neighbor island venues next week. Posey is a Federal Affairs Counsel with the Education Committee of the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).

She conducts NCSL lobbying activities on education, representing state positions and concerns to Congress and the Administration, and was NCSL’s chief lobbyist on Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) reauthorization.  Ms. Posey has been at NCSL since 1999 and her experience includes work on a wide variety of issues including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), federal childcare grants, child welfare, child support, food and nutrition programs, agriculture, and rural development.

The neighbor island Town Hall sessions are jointly sponsored by the Hawai‘i State Senate and the Hawai‘i State Teachers Association (HSTA).  Senator Kidani’s colleagues from the respective Senate districts will join her for the presentations, including Senate President Ronald Kouchi from Kaua`i, Senator Lorraine Inouye from Hilo, and Senators Rosalyn Baker and Gilbert Keith-Agaran from Maui.  Others may join the sessions as their schedules allow.

The Town Hall sessions are all open to the public at no charge at the following locations:

  • Monday, July 11 – Hawai‘i Island, Hilo High School, 5:00-7:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 12 – Maui, Baldwin High School, 5:00-7:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday, July 13 – Kaua`i, Kapa`a High School, 5:00-7:00 p.m.

For additional information, contact Senator Kidani at senkidani@capitol.hawaii.gov or HSTA at mhiga@hsta.org

 

DOE Removing Monkey Pod Tree on Waianuenue Avenue

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) announced yesterday that it will remove a monkey pod tree from the entrance of the district office on Waianuenue Avenue.

monkey pod tree

In June an arborist reported the tree suffers from severe rot and its condition has reached a stage that may result in its fall, causing a safety hazard.

The tree is over 50 years old and has a canopy spread of over 100 feet and a height of 60 feet to 70 feet.  The tree’s limbs are hollow from rot and estimated to weigh 15 to 20 tons.

Based on the evaluation and safety risk to the public, HIDOE will be removing the tree.  HIDOE has hired Tree Works for the tree removal, which will take place sometime before the school year begins on Aug. 1. Until that time, the area around the tree is prohibited from access.

Zonta Hilo Awards $2,500 to Young Women Pursing Higher Education

The Zonta Club of Hilo presented $2,500 in scholarships and awards to five outstanding Hawaii Island young women at the club’s June monthly business meeting. Three high school seniors were recognized for the Young Women in Public Affairs (YWPA) award and two University of Hawaii at Hilo (UHH) students were awarded nursing scholarships.

 “Zonta Club of Hilo service chair Julie Tulang with the club’s 2016 nursing scholarship winner Poki‘i Balaz, club president Tonya Ozone and YWPA 2016 award recipients Makena Wagner, Zoi Nakamura and Cassidy Kelii.”

“Zonta Club of Hilo service chair Julie Tulang with the club’s 2016 nursing scholarship winner Poki‘i Balaz, club president Tonya Ozone and YWPA 2016 award recipients Makena Wagner, Zoi Nakamura and Cassidy Kelii.”

The YWPA award recognizes young women committed to volunteering, who demonstrate leadership skills and are dedicated to empowering women and girls. Applicants are asked to reflect on their volunteer work and problems limiting advancement of the status of women in their community and worldwide.

  • Makena Wagner, a senior at Kamehameha High School, received the first place $500 YWPA award. “Finding ways to give back is not just good for self-esteem, but it leaves one wanting to do more,” said Wagner, who will be attending Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts.
  • Waiakea High School junior Zoi Nakamura was second place for YWPA and received $400. “I’ve set my mind on completing a course of study that’s based on service; that’s why I chose the Public Service Academy at school,” said Nakamura.
  • Third place for YWPA and $300 went to Cassidy Kelii, a senior at Kamehameha High School. Kelii will pursue a degree in political science on the mainland and said she will return to Hawaii to practice law. Kelii is president of an all-girl construction club.
  • Kealohaku‘ualohaku‘upoki‘i “Poki‘i” Balaz, who is currently enrolled in the Doctor of Nursing Practice at UH Hilo, received the club’s $1,000 nursing scholarship. Balaz said taking care of her parents inspired her to specialize in geriatric care. Balaz earned her Bachelor of Science in nursing from UH Manoa and Master of Science in nursing from Oklahoma City University.
  • Carola Geitner, a junior pursuing her Bachelor of Science in nursing at UH Hilo, was second place for the nursing scholarship and received a $300 cash award. Geitner, who was responsible for the health and well-being of her younger sister at the age of seven, says the sense of caring and desire to look after people and their health fueled her interest in wanting to become a nurse.

About Zonta Club of Hilo
The Zonta Club of Hilo was founded in 1950 and is part of Zonta International, a global organization whose mission is to empower women through service and advocacy. To learn more about the club’s service projects, special events, advocacy efforts and scholarship opportunities, visit zontahilo.org. Facebook // Instagram @ZontaHIlo

BISAC Summer Jam 2016 – Saturday, July 30

BISAC Summer Jam 2016

Two UH Hilo Student-Athletes Recognized as All-American Scholars

Two University of Hawai’i at Hilo student-athletes were recognized as Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA) All-American Scholars as announced on Tuesday, July 5.
vulcan golfers

Earning the honors were freshman Shantel Antonio (Hilo, Hawai’i/Kamehameha-Hawai’i) and sophomore Andi Igawa (Hilo, Hawai’i/Waiakea).

A total of 830 women’s collegiate golfers were recognized with this prestigious honor. The criteria for selection to the All-American Scholar Team are some of the most stringent in all of college athletics. The minimum cumulative GPA is 3.50.

About the Women’s Golf Coaches Association
The Women’s Golf Coaches Association, founded in 1983, is a non-profit organization representing women’s collegiate golf coaches. The WGCA was formed to encourage the playing of college golf for women in correlation with a general objective of education and in accordance with the highest tradition of intercollegiate competition. Today, the WGCA represents nearly 600 coaches throughout the U.S. and is dedicated to educating, promoting and recognizing both its members and the student-athletes they represent

Farm to School Initiative Asks Farmers to Submit Bids

The Farm to School Initiative is seeking qualified farmers and vendors to submit bids to deliver fresh fruit and vegetables to various Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) schools statewide.  Local farmers are encouraged to submit their bids by July 13.  The invitation for bids (IFB) can be found at http://spo3.hawaii.gov/notices/notices/ifb-d17-005.

Farm to foodSpearheaded by Lt. Governor Shan Tsutsui, the HIDOE and Department of Agriculture are working collaboratively on the Initiative.  The goal is to address the supply and demand issues surrounding the purchasing of local food for our school cafeterias.  The Initiative also aims to systematically increase State purchasing of local food for our school menus as well as connect our keiki with their food through the use of products from the local agricultural community.

“With Hawaii importing about 85 percent of our food, the Farm to School Initiative is one way we are working towards becoming food sustainable in our state,” said Lt. Governor Tsutsui.  “While supporting local farmers and our economy, we are also feeding our students with locally-grown fresh fruit and vegetables.”

HIDOE has 256 public schools and its School Food Services Branch feeds approximately 100,000 students and staff each day.

“We’ve made it a priority to purchase local produce, however, our options have been limited,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “We are hopeful that this initiative will allow for more locally-based products to be used in our schools’ food services while keeping costs reasonable.”

“We encourage local farmers to participate in this program,” said Scott Enright, Chairperson of the Hawaii Board of Agriculture. “One of the challenges farmers face is the uncertainty of supply and demand and this program will help farmers plan and grow their crops with the knowledge that there will be a market for their produce.  In addition, keiki will be able to grow up with an appreciation of locally grown fruits and vegetables.”

Across the nation, farm to school programs are reconnecting students to a better understanding of the food system and where their food comes from.  Farm to school programs introduce students to healthier eating habits and help them become familiar with new vegetables and fruits that they and their families will then be more willing to incorporate into their own diets.

In April, the Farm to School Initiative gathered information from farmers and ranchers as well as hosted a mixer to inform them on how to become a qualified vendor with the State.  Those events, including the IFB, culminates with the Farm to School Initiative Pilot Project, which is expected to begin in 2017.

Introduction to Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) for Remote Sensing and Resource Management

The College of Continuing Education and Community Service (CCECS) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo is accepting registration for a workshop entitled Introduction to Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) for Remote Sensing and Resource Management. Classes will be held on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, July 11, 12 and 13, from 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at UH Hilo’s Edith Kanaka’ole Hall, Room 274. Tuition is $750 and includes all training materials.

Aerial Photography

Aerial Photography

The course will be taught by Dr. Ryan Perroy, assistant professor, geography and principal investigator, Spatial Data Analysis and Visualization Lab in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at UH Hilo. Participants will gain the essential knowledge and organization required to safely and legally integrate UAS operations into their daily work activities through live demonstrations, hands-on UAS simulations, and computer processing techniques working with UAS-derived data.

Topics will include mission planning and execution, choosing the right fixed wing or copter platform, applying for a FAA Certificate of Authorization application (COA), creating high resolution orthorectified imagery, using Structure from Motion technology to create 3D digital surface models, and change detection applications.

Due to federal export laws, enrollment is limited to U.S. citizens only. A USB is recommended. For more information and to register, contact CCECS at 932-7830 or email ccecs@hawaii.edu.

Cool Schools Initiative – Hawaii First State to Mandate Clean Energy Schools

The Department of Education is expected to spend nearly $1 billion on electricity by 2035, but can save hundreds of millions through progress toward clean energy goals established by House Bill 2569, signed by Gov. David Ige today.

hb2569

“This bill will save hundreds of millions in future operating costs that can be better spent in classrooms and higher paid teachers instead of utility bills,” said Rep. Chris Lee, the bill’s introducer. “It also creates important accountability and transparency requirements for the $100 million the state has already given the DOE to cool classrooms.”

The measure requires the DOE to:

  • Establish a goal of becoming net-zero with respect to energy use by January 1, 2035;
  • Expedite the cooling of all public school classrooms; and
  • Submit an annual transparency and accountability report to the Legislature containing information about its progress toward the cooling of all classrooms and net-zero energy goal.

The state Department of Education spends about $48 million a year on electricity. By installing more efficient lighting, using natural ventilation, and investing in renewable technologies such as solar panels and batteries to power schools, energy costs will be reduced and student performance improved, according to Lee.

 

Hawaii is the first state to mandate that clean energy be used by all its public schools.