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More Hawaii Teachers Obtain Certification

The Hawai‘i Department of Education announces that 56 teachers were honored Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018, for earning or renewing their National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification. Educators who earn this certification have demonstrated that they meet the highest standards for teaching, and must be up-to-date with the latest strategies and best practices in education.

Hawaii is ranked 11th in the nation for percentage of National Board Certified Teachers. Photo Credit: Department of Education

Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto addressed the teachers at the 2018 Hawai‘i National Board Certified Teacher Ceremony hosted by the Hawai‘i State Teachers Association and Kamehameha Schools at the Hawai‘i State Capitol Auditorium.

“We are proud of these teachers for their efforts to elevate their profession and provide enhanced learning opportunities for Hawai‘i’s students,” said Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto. “Earning this certification is no easy task and I commend them for taking on this additional workload and responsibility. Congratulations to these teachers, their families and schools on this remarkable accomplishment.”

Hawai‘i is ranked 11th in the nation for percentage of National Board Certified Teachers (NBCTs), and boasts one of the fastest growing populations of NBCTs. There are currently 625 teachers who earned their certification.

“In 2017, The Aloha state added 56 new NBCTs reflecting a 10 percent jump in their total,”added NBCT president and CEO of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Peggy Brookins. This means more students across your state being taught by teachers who prove they teach to the highest standards. Every student deserves to be taught by an accomplished teacher.”

The NBCT certification is a rigorous process that can take anywhere between one to three years and involves applicants submitting comprehensive portfolio. The renewal process is just as demanding and requires teachers to show professional growth.

Tracey Idica, teacher at Aiea High School and HSTA NBCT network affiliate, shared, “This is how teachers are taking back their profession. Doctors can become Board Certified, accountants can become CPAs, and now teachers can become NBCTs. It’s a voluntary process but its the way we can show the community that we are accomplished teachers.”

The following teachers earned their certification in 2017:

  • Jennifer Ainoa, Molokai Middle
  • Lori Cabalar, Keaau Elementary
  • Jane Cariaga, Pahoa Elementary
  • Tanya Cobbin, Waipahu High
  • Patricia Contee, Salt Lake Elementary
  • Chris Cordell, Hawaii Technology Academy
  • Alexander Cyran, Keaau Middle
  • Jill Harai, Iliahi Elementary
  • Danielle Hartwick, Makawao Elementary
  • Liane Ibara, Palolo Elementary
  • Michael Ibara, Puuhale Elementary
  • Cheryl Iwasaki, Helemano Elementary
  • Qurratulay Joy, Makawao Elementary
  • Mara Kaizawa-Miyata, McKinley High
  • Naomi Kamauoha, Palolo Elementary
  • Dawn Kanoho, Momilani Elementary
  • Kellee Kelly, Keaau Elementary
  • Samantha Kodama, Kaimuki Middle
  • Laurel Latimer, Makawao Elementary
  • Christine Layton, Hawaii Technology Academy
  • Jamie Letreta, Holomua Elementary
  • Erin Medeiros, Kauai High
  • Elaine Medina, Makaha Elementary
  • Nikki Morishige, Waiahole Elementary
  • Cheryl Motoyama, Red Hill Elementary
  • Lisa Nakama, Kaneohe Elementary
  • Shanna Nakamura, Aliiolani Elementary
  • Laura Obuhanych, Holomua Elementary
  • Lisa Oka, Wahiawa Elementary
  • Elizabeth Okamoto, Webling Elementary
  • Sonia Orlando, Waianae Elementary
  • Sandra Oshiro, Momilani Elementary
  • Robyn Panem, Keaau Elementary
  • Suzanne Reed, Ahuimanu Elementary
  • Tamie Richardson, Kaimiloa Elementary
  • Catherine Ritti, Farrington High
  • Jennifer Sarpi, Campbell High
  • Mari Sato, Enchanted Lake Elementary
  • Sheena Shimose, Leihoku Elementary
  • Jessica Sleeper, Kamaile Academy
  • Aysha Spencer, Chiefess Kapiolani Elementary
  • Hannibal Starbuck, Baldwin High
  • Stefanie Sweeney, Waikiki Elementary
  • Jamie Takamura, Red Hill Elementary
  • Jennifer Valenzuela, Lahainaluna High
  • Maile Viela, Waihee Elementary
  • Lynn Wakahiro, Momilani Elementary
  • Amanda Watson, Kailua Intermediate
  • Elizabeth Williams, Campbell High
  • Jill Yamasawa, Kapolei Middle

For more information about the certification and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, click here.

Student Meals Feature Another Local Food Source

The Hawai‘i State Department of Education (HIDOE) continues to try and use local agriculture in student meals through its ‘Aina Pono Harvest of the Month program, which kicked off last year with locally grown beef. This month, HIDOE and the Lieutenant Governor’s Office have partnered up with the Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture (HDOA) and various local farms across the state to serve fresh bananas at all public schools.

Fresh bananas will be served in a Banana Pie or a Banana Crumble (pictured above) at every public school cafeteria in January.
Photo Credit: Department of Education

“We’re highlighting locally grown bananas by serving either a fresh Banana Pie or Banana Crumble one day in January at every school cafeteria,” said administrator for School Food Services Branch Albert Scales. “By introducing a produce that is locally grown in Hawai‘i to our students each month, we hope to expand their palates and allow them to try new foods that they might not have been exposed to at home.”

Scales said serving the bananas in a dessert would make it more appealing for students. “Instead of serving raw bananas that students can peel and eat, we wanted to be creative,” he said. “Part of introducing new foods to children is making it fun for them. If the new food looks interesting, they’re more inclined to try it.”

While HIDOE is changing the way food is purchased, prepared and delivered, the ‘Aina Pono Harvest of the Month program is also a great opportunity for Hawaii’s agriculture community.

“This new program that was developed under the Farm to School Initiative continues to cultivate the partnership with our schools, farmers and ranchers,” said Scott Enright, chairperson of the Hawai‘i Board of Agriculture. “It also connects students with the farming community, allowing them to experience the taste and freshness of what Hawai‘i has to offer.”

Approximately 34,000 lbs. of bananas are being provided by several local farms, including Sugarland Growers Inc. and ‘Ohana Banana Farms, to name a few.

“We’re excited to be working with the Department of Education on incorporating more fresh, local produce for Hawaii’s public school students,” said owner of Sugarland Growers Larry Jefts.

Jefts said purchasing local foods from our food safety certified farms on each island also helps to support and strengthen Hawai‘i’s economy.

“Buying local creates important economic opportunities and supports our community’s growth and sustainability,” said Jefts. “The money that is spent on locally grown foods is reinvested with other local businesses and services across the state. There are numerous benefits as a result of this coming full circle.”

The Farm to School Initiative started in 2015, and was led by Lt. Gov. Shan Tsutsui. The program was created to increase locally grown food in student meals through a partnership with Lt. Gov. Tsutsui, HIDOE, the Department of Agriculture and The Kohala Center. Today, the Farm to School Initiative is included under ‘Aina Pono, which also incorporates school gardens, nutrition, health and food education, test kitchens, meal programs and menu planning at Hawai‘i’s public schools.

$3 Million in Improvements Slated for Honoka‘a High & Intermediate

Hawai`i State Senator Lorraine Inouye. Senate Communications photo.

Hawai‘i Gov. David Ige released $3 million in Capital Improvement Project (CIP) funding for Honoka‘a High and Intermediate School.

Allocated has been $1.5 million to provide covered walkways that will connect various buildings at Honoka‘a High and Intermediate School. This project will also improve cross-campus mobility while improving sidewalk ADA ramps and access. Another $1.5 million will finance the design and construction of new restroom facilities at the school’s auditorium.

Sen. Lorraine Inouye (District 4: Hilo, Hāmākua, Kohala, Waimea, Waikoloa, Kona) championed to secure the funds which was approved in the 2016 and 2017 Legislative Sessions.

“Honoka‘a High and Intermediate is a school that carries a substantial responsibility in educating a huge number of students, so I’m thrilled that my colleagues in the Legislature and the Governor recognized the needs of the campus,” said Sen. Inouye. “I’m proud and happy students and staff at the school will soon have a healthier and safer environment to learn.”

Honoka‘a High and Intermediate School was founded in 1889 and is located in the center of Honoka‘a Town on the Hāmākua Coast of the Island of Hawai‘i. The Honoka‘a complex is unique in that it is the only high school in the state that is fed by a kindergarten to eighth grade public conversion charter school (Waimea Middle), a kindergarten to sixth grade elementary school (Honoka‘a Elementary) and a kindergarten to ninth grade elementary and intermediate school (Pa‘auilo Elementary & Intermediate), serving students from as far as Kawaihae through ‘Ō‘ōkala, about a 40 mile reach.

Hawaii Gets Federal Nod on ESSA Plan, Approval Expected Soon

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) this morning received encouraging feedback from the U.S. Department of Education (USED) following a review of its State plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). USED officials gave the indication for “ultimate approval of the plan” during a call with HIDOE officials.

“We had a great discussion with federal education officials who determined that Hawaii is well on its way for approval once we make minor adjustments to our consolidated plan,” said Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto. “The State plan is a culmination of a community effort and it’s rewarding to see that the USED recognizes Hawaii’s effort and commitment to providing equitable and accessible education.”

ESSA is a reauthorization of the federal education law known as the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. It replaces the prior reauthorization, most commonly known as No Child Left Behind.

Following the Hawaii State Board of Education approval, the Superintendent and Governor David Ige submitted the signed state’s ESSA plan to USED in September 2017. The Hawaii ESSA plan is designed to support HIDOE’s Strategic Plan objectives, which provides common direction for public schools to empower students in their learning.

“I’m pleased to learn that we are close to getting our ESSA plan approved,” said BOE Chairman Lance Mizumoto. “The plan reflects our collective commitment to providing a well-rounded education for all students.”

HIDOE is making the necessary adjustments where further clarification is being sought on student supports that are already in place. Once the non-substantial changes are made, Superintendent Kishimoto will send the State plan to the USED for final approval.

For information on the state plan, visit http://bit.ly/HIDOE-ESSAfaqs.

Click to read

Read the USED Hawaii State plan interim feedback letter here.

Public Schools Shine During Computer Science Education Week Festivities

Schools across the state joined nationwide celebrations of Computer Science Education with more than 170 events over the past week – from an Hour of Code at Kailua Elementary to a family friendly event hosted by Daniel K. Inouye Elementary that featured coding activities, robot obstacle courses and much more.

Schools across the state joined nationwide celebrations of Computer Science Education.
Photo Credit: Department of Education

“It’s wonderful to see students and teachers get excited about Computer Science education, not just during this Computer Science Education Week but year-round,” said Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto. “We’ve been working on advancing Computer Science curriculum as part of our Strategic Plan. We look forward to presenting our plans before the Board of Education on implementation across cross-disciplinary fields such as Math, Science, STEM, Advanced Placement and Career and Technical Education.”

In support of the Department’s efforts in developing rigorous K-12 computer science standards, Governor David Ige yesterday added his name along with other governors to the Governors Partnership for K-12 Computer Science.

Computer science (CS) education is tied to the Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) Strategic Plan and implementation strategies. Earlier this year, HIDOE’s Office of Curriculum Instruction and Student Support met with the Hawaii State Student Council to get their perspective on a CS education rollout effort.  The CS activities rolled out this week across the state is a reflection of the teacher collaboration taking place as well as raising opportunities for students to voice the importance of digital learning.

“We know that the workforce’s top jobs are in need of kids who are educated in computer science,” said Sarah Milianta-Laffin, seventh grade teacher, Ilima Intermediate. “If we’re going to get to that place, we have to get kids excited about it – we have to be their cheerleaders because we’re teaching them about a world that we haven’t been taught about ourselves.”

Many schools are incorporating courses in coding, which has been well received by students.

“Coding is a superpower,” explained Mitchell Togiai, seventh grader at Ilima Intermediate. “In the world that we live in today where technology is everywhere, it’s really important to learn how to code.”

Capping off CS Week

This evening, Superintendent Kishimoto and members of her leadership team will be attending a close out event – Momilani Elementary’s third annual CS for ALL Night. Due to the popularity of the annual festivity, the event is taking place at neighboring Pearl City High School. It will feature hands on activities connected to concepts in computer science such as computing systems, networks and the Internet, as well as algorithms and programming.

Big Island schools participating were:

  • Chiefess Kapiolani El
  • Honaunau El
  • Honokaa El
  • Kahakai El
  • Kealakehe El
  • Kealakehe High
  • Kealakehe Inter
  • Keaau El
  • Keonepoko El
  • Konawaena El
  • Mt. View El
  • Naalehu El
  • Waikoloa El & Middle
  • Waimea El

DOE & Partners Aim to Promote Oral Health

The Hawai‘i Dental Association (HDA) and the Hawai‘i State Department of Education (HIDOE) are renewing their commitment to educating kids about the importance of dental hygiene. The agencies have continued their Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to promote oral health by teaching students proper dental hygiene techniques and providing information about access to free dental health services.

HDA will conduct informational presentations in HIDOE first and second grade classes on O‘ahu, Maui, Kaua‘i and Hawai‘i Island through December 2017 and again from January through February 2018, which is National Children’s Dental Health Month.

“Our goal with establishing healthcare partnerships, like this one with the Hawai‘i Dental Association, is to provide access to health services for our students so they can show up to school healthy, engaged and ready to learn,” said Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto. “Mahalo to everyone involved in this partnership—from the dentists to our teachers—it is an important step to ensuring our students are getting proper oral healthcare.”

These efforts are also part of a national initiative from the American Dental Association to bring preventative education and dental services to underserved children, which includes 92,000 economically disadvantaged public school students in Hawai‘i.

“During the first year of this partnership, we had 10 dentists educate more than 700 students,” added Hawai‘i Public Policy Advocate President Melissa Pavlicek. “We look forward to continuing the success of this partnership and expanding outreach even further this year. We encourage schools and teachers that are interested to contact Danny Cup Choy at (808) 447-1840.”

This partnership highlights the work that has been done by the department to ensure that all students come to school healthy and ready to learn.

Other healthcare partners include the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, which launched the “Hawai‘i Keiki” program with the department in 2014 and has increased school-based health services.

“Stranger Danger” – Department of Education Reports 3 Cases at Separate Schools

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) encourages parents to talk to their children about “stranger danger” and highlight measures that students can take to stay safe.

A letter to parents was sent home from all schools in the Campbell-Kapolei Complex Area after similar “stranger danger”reports were made at three elementary schools in the past week.  In all three cases, students walking to or from school reported being approached by a male in a black or dark-colored truck who offered them a ride.  In one case, a student reported being grabbed the male in an attempted abduction.  In all cases, no students were injured and the incidents were reported to parents and/or school officials.  The Honolulu Police Department is investigating.

Parents are encouraged to reinforce the following safety measures with their children: 

  • Stay away from strangers.  Do not talk to or take anything from them.
  • Don’t go anywhere with someone you don’t know.  Never accept a ride from a stranger.
  • Stay more than an arm’s reach from strangers.  If a stranger approaches you, seek help immediately from a trusted adult.
  • Use the buddy system.  Avoid walking anywhere alone.
  • If a stranger grabs you, do whatever it takes to stop the stranger and yell for help.
  • Report any suspicious activity to a trusted adult.
  • Be alert of your surroundings and let others know where you will be and what time you will be back.

HIDOE appreciates the assistance and vigilance of parents, law enforcement and the community in working together to keep all of our students safe.  Visit HIDOE’s website for more information on Safety at School.  

Another letter sent out previously:

2016-17 Strive HI Performance System Results

The Hawaii State Department of Education shared its 2016-17 Strive HI Performance System results this evening during the Board of Education community meeting. The school accountability system focuses on state and schools’ progress on Strategic Plan Student Success Objectives and provides educators and communities with information to take action for student learning.

“The results are encouraging and show our focus moving in the right direction with college and career readiness measures remaining steady, including some growth in Science,” said Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto. “As we move forward, we will be very specific and purposeful in our approach to address the achievement gap and chronic absenteeism. We will take what we have learned about effective student-centered practices since 2005 and raise our implementation work to another level.”

While statewide overall results in English Language Arts, Math and Science have shown growth over the past three years; the results have been mixed compared to 2016:

  • Science – up 4 percentage points from 2016
    (2015: 41%; 2016: 42%; 2017: 46%)
  • Mathematics – no change from 2016
    (2015: 41%; 2016: 42%; 2017: 42%)
  • English Language Arts/Literacy – down 1 percentage point from 2016
    (2015: 48%; 2016: 51%; 2017: 50%)

While overall state results were stable, the following schools showed the most growth in English Language Arts and Math over the past three years (scroll to the bottom of the release for an extended list of top performing schools):

  • English Language Arts/Literacy – Three-year average gains in percentage of students meeting/exceeding standards:
    • Kauai High – up 17 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 25%; 2016: 59%; 2017: 59%)
    • Kapaa High – up 17 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 33%; 2016: 58%; 2017: 66%)
    • Kahuku High & Intermediate – up 15 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 20%; 2016: 54%; 2017: 50%)
    • Kaiser High: up 14 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 51%; 2016: 74%; 2017: 79%)
    • Pauoa Elementary – up 11 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 56%; 2016: 78%; 2017: 77%)
  • Math – Three-year average gains in percentage of students meeting/exceeding standards:
    • Pauoa Elementary – up 17 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 47%; 2016: 72%; 2017: 81%)
    • Kohala High – up 16 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 15%; 2016: 22%; 2017: 47%)
    • Kapolei Elementary – up 13 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 30%; 2016: 52%; 2017: 56%)
    • Kealakehe High – up 13 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 19%; 2016: 39%; 2017: 44%)
    • Haleiwa Elementary – up 11 percentage points from 2015
      (2015: 49%; 2016: 49%; 2017: 71%)

Strive HI was launched in school year 2012-13 as the state’s locally designed performance system that was a waiver from the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) law. The accountability system includes multiple measures of school performance including proficiency in Science, Math and Language Arts/Literacy; chronic absenteeism; school climate; graduation rates; and achievement gaps. The system was modified earlier this year to address the federal requirements under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and the revised DOE/BOE Strategic Plan. The law replaces both NCLB and the state’s waiver. ESSA requires full implementation including the provisions related to school accountability this school year.

English Language Arts and Math scores are derived from the Smarter Balanced Assessment, and Science scores are from the Hawaii State Assessment in Science.

Click here to view the 2016-17 State Snapshot of Strive HI indicators. For more information about the Strive HI performance system, click here.

Below are lists of top performers across indicators in the Strive HI System. Results for schools with small student populations are suppressed to protect student privacy.

 

​Highest Achieving Schools in Meeting English Language Arts/Literacy Standards
Statewide: 50%
Lanikai El 88%
Kaelepulu El 84%
Mililani Ike El 82%
Momilani El 81%
de Silva El 80%
Mililani Uka El 79%
Hickam El 79%
Kaiser High 79%
Koko Head El 78%
Pauoa El 77%
Manoa El 77%
Aina Haina El 77%
Roosevelt High 77%
Waikiki El 76%
Noelani El 75%
Highest Achieving Schools in Meeting Math Standards

Statewide: 42%

Lanikai El 89%
Momilani El 87%
Pauoa El 81%
Noelani El 79%
Waikiki El 79%
Mililani Ike El 78%
Maemae El 76%
Wilson El 76%
Kaelepulu El 75%
Aliiolani El 75%
Mililani Mauka El 75%
Mililani Uka El 75%
Palisades El 74%
Laie El 73%
Pearl Ridge El 73%
Highest Achieving Schools in Meeting Science Standards

Statewide: 46%

Lanikai El 98%
Maunawili El 96%
Haleiwa El 96%
Kaelepulu El 92%
Mililani Ike El 92%
Manoa El 91%
Maemae El 91%
Kamalii El 91%
Pearl City El 91%
Waikiki El 90%
Mililani Mauka El 89%
Hickam El 88%
Aikahi El 88%
Waiau El 88%
Koko Head El 87%

 

​Highest Achieving Schools in English Language Arts/Literacy Growth (3-Year Average Gains)
Kauai High +17 percentage points
Kapaa High +17 percentage points
Kahuku High & Intermediate +15 percentage points
Kaiser High +14 percentage points
Pauoa El +11 percentage points
Kaewai El +11 percentage points
SEEQS +10 percentage points
Waialua High & Intermediate +9 percentage points
Waiakea High +9 percentage points
Makawao El +9 percentage points
Kapolei El +9 percentage points
Kalihi Uka El +8 percentage points
Kalaheo High +8 percentage points
Aliamanu Middle +8 percentage points
Na Wai Ola +7 percentage points
Kealakehe High +7 percentage points
​Highest Achieving Schools in Math Growth (3-Year Average Gains)
Pauoa El +17 percentage points
Kohala High +16 percentage points
Kapolei El +13 percentage points
Kealakehe High +13 percentage points
Haleiwa El +11 percentage points
Aliiolani El +11 percentage points
Kauai High +11 percentage points
Kaewai El +11 percentage points
Waiau El +9 percentage points
Kekaulike High +9 percentage points
Palolo El +9 percentage points
Waiahole El +8 percentage points
Kalihi Uka El +8 percentage points
Wheeler Middle +8 percentage points
Highest Achieving Elementary Schools in Reducing Chronic Absenteeism
Maunaloa El -21 percentage points
Mountain View El -6 percentage points
Keonepoko El -6 percentage points
Na Wai Ola -6 percentage points
Lincoln El -5 percentage points
Naalehu El -5 percentage points
Maunawili El -5 percentage points
Sunset Beach El -5 percentage points
Kamalii El -5 percentage points
Kamehameha III El -5 percentage points
Likelike El -4 percentage points
Konawaena El -4 percentage points
Waimalu El -4 percentage points
Waiahole El -4 percentage points
Royal El -4 percentage points
​Kalihi Waena El ​-4 percentage points
​Kaunakakai El ​-4 percentage points
Highest Achieving Middle Schools in Reducing Chronic Absenteeism
Ilima Intermediate -5 percentage points
Wahiawa Middle -4 percentage points
Waiakea Intermediate -4 percentage points
Kapaa Middle -4 percentage points
Lahaina Intermediate -3 percentage points
Stevenson Middle -3 percentage points
Aliamanu Middle -3 percentage points
Iao Intermediate -3 percentage points
Highlands Intermediate -3 percentage points
Washington Middle -2 percentage points
Waimea Canyon Middle -1 percentage point
Waipahu Intermediate -1 percentage point
Kalakaua Middle -1 percentage point
Ka Umeke Kaeo -1 percentage point
Moanalua Middle -1 percentage point
 
Highest Achieving High Schools in Reducing Chronic Absenteeism
Niihau O Kekaha -12 percentage points
KANAKA -8 percentage points
Kanu o ka Aina -7 percentage points
Laupahoehoe Community PCS -4 percentage points
Lahainaluna High -4 percentage points
Kekaulike High -4 percentage points
Kailua High -3 percentage points
Molokai High -3 percentage points
Anuenue -3 percentage points
Thompson Academy -3 percentage points
Kauai High -3 percentage points
Waialua High & Intermediate -2 percentage points
Mililani High -2 percentage points
Moanalua High -2 percentage points
Highest Achieving Schools in Graduation Rate (Four-Year Rate)
University Laboratory 100%
Thompson Academy 97%
Anuenue 97%
Moanalua High 95%
Ehunuikaimalino 95%
Mililani High 94%
Radford High 94%
Kauai High 90%
Kalani High 90%
Kapaa High 90%
​Highest Achieving Schools in College-Going Rate
16-month enrollment rate
University Laboratory 86%
Kalani High 81%
Roosevelt High 75%
Kaiser High 74%
Mililani High 72%
McKinley High 67%
Kalaheo High 66%
Moanalua High 64%
Radford High 61%
Pearl City High 60%
Waimea High 58%
​Hawaii Academy ​58%
​Kapaa High ​57%
​Kauai High ​57%
Molokai High 56%

Hawaii Department of Education Announces 2017-18 Enrollment Figures for Public and Charter Schools

Hawaii’s public and charter schools saw a slight decrease in enrollment for a total of 179,255 for school year 2017-18 compared to 179,902 last year. This year, Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) schools enrolled 168,095 students (down 1,173 from last year), and charter schools saw an increase of enrollment with 11,160 students (up 526 from last year) and the addition of two new charter schools.

In 2017-18, the five largest HIDOE public schools by grade level are:

  • High Schools (all grades 9-12): Campbell (3,110), Mililani (2,571), Waipahu (2,554), Farrington (2,309), Kapolei (2,035).
  • Intermediate (grades 7-8)/Middle (grades 6-8): Mililani Middle (1,873), Kapolei Middle (1,521), Waipahu Intermediate (1,294), Maui Waena Intermediate (1,176), Kalakaua Middle (1,075).
  • Elementary Schools: August Ahrens (1,249), Holomua (1,163), Ewa (1,070), Keoneula (1,037), Waipahu (1,026).

The five smallest HIDOE schools in the state include: Waiahole Elementary (81), Olomana School (69), Hawaii School for the Deaf and Blind (53), Maunaloa Elementary (41), Niihau High and Elementary (9).

The five largest charter schools are: Hawaii Technology Academy (1,111), Kamaile Academy (858), Ka Waihona O Ka Naauao (653), Hawaii Academy of Arts and Sciences (644), Myron Thompson Academy (582).

The five smallest charter schools are: Kula Aupuni Niihau A Hakipuu Learning Center (63), Ke Kula Niihau Kekaha (54), Kula Aupuni Niihau A Kahelelani Aloha (49), Kapolei Charter School (49), Ke Ana Laahana (43).

View Report

 

Department of Education Pursues Expansion of Hawaiian Education Assessment

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) has taken another step towards advancing Hawaiian language assessments for Hawaiian immersion students. In a collaborative effort with the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and Hawaiian language stakeholders, HIDOE is seeking federal approval for the expansion of the Kaiapuni Assessment of Educational Outcomes (KAEO) to Grades 5-8. Ka Papahana Kaiapuni (Hawaiian Language Immersion) students in Grades 3 and 4 have been taking the KAEO assessment since the 2014-15 school year.

“The collaborative work to expand Kaiapuni assessments for more students honors our commitment to assure that a Hawaiian language education pathway is strengthened and realized in our public school system,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “A lot of work has been done to ensure that these tests are rigorous and meets a standard of education that provides high quality assessments for our Kaiapuni students.”

Additionally, the desire to expand Hawaiian assessment was expressed by Native Hawaiian education advocates who provided feedback during the Hawaii Consolidated State Plan for the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) public comment period and in testimony before the Board of Education.

For the past two years, the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) approved HIDOE’s requests for extended waivers that allowed Kaiapuni students to take a specialized assessment in lieu of the state’s English language arts and math student assessments.

HIDOE will now request a USDOE double-testing waiver for Kaiapuni students in Grades 5-8. Approval of the waiver would allow Kaiapuni students enrolled in those grades to take the KAEO field tests in language arts, mathematics and science in lieu of the Smarter Balanced Assessments (SBA) in language arts and mathematics and the Hawaii State Science Assessment (HSA-Science).

“The previous waivers granted by the USDOE has lifted the burden of having our Hawaiian language students take double the amount of assessments,” stated Tammi Chun, Assistant Superintendent, office of strategy, innovation and performance. “The work put into the expansion of assessments for Kaiapuni students is unprecedented.”

A seven-day public comment period will open on Wednesday, June 28, 2017 and close on Wednesday, July 5, 2017. Those interested in submitting comments can email ESSA@hawaiidoe.org.  For more information, please click here to view the public notice.

Click to read notice

Hawaii Department of Education Announces Transition Centers Initiative in Honor of Late Congressman K. Mark Takai

In partnership with Hawaii 3Rs and the Military Affairs Council, the Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) announced today an effort to develop high-quality transition centers for Hawaii public schools. The effort is in honor of late Congressman K. Mark Takai, who was a staunch advocate for Hawaii’s students and supporter of military-dependent students throughout his career.

Takai Transition Center partners and Kailua Intermediate AVID students announce the new HIDOE initiative. Photo Credit: Department of Education

School Transition Centers provide a safe and stable foundation for all students, particularly newly arrived military-dependent students, offering peer-to-peer mentoring to help students acclimate into their school community.

“Transition Centers provide tremendous support to new students as well as instilling leadership skills for student mentors,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “We’re grateful for this partnership that allows us to not only expand this program, but fulfill one of our goals in our Strategic Plan in helping as many students and families as possible.”

HIDOE will commit $250,000 annually for four years using federal Impact Aid funds towards school Transition Center facility improvements, technology, furnishings and special events.  Program partners at the Hawaii Chamber of Commerce’s Military Affairs Council and the Hawaii Business Roundtable will provide matching funds each year to be managed by the Hawaii 3Rs Special Fund.

“Hawaii 3R’s is pleased to partner with the Hawaii Department of Education to develop transition centers that will help students assimilate into an unfamiliar environment,” said Hawaii 3Rs Board Chairman Alan Oshima. “By easing them into the rhythm of a new school and campus, learning can become the priority.”

U.S. Rep. Takai’s conscientious work was essential in securing tens of millions in federal Impact Aid funding every year that goes to all public schools

“In working on this initiative there was no question that the effort would be in honor of our friend Mark Takai who was fiercely committed to public education and his service to our nation,” added Superintendent Matayoshi.

“Transition Centers provide tremendous support to new students as well as instilling leadership skills for student mentors,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. Photo Credit: Department of Education

Transition Centers are rooted at public schools with higher populations of military-dependent students, such as Radford High, Leilehua High, Mokapu Elementary and many more.  The success of these Transition Centers will be expanded to serve more students at other schools across the state.

Future transition centers that benefit from this effort will be known as a “Takai Transition Center” and will feature the following pledge.

Future transition centers that benefit from this effort will be known as a “Takai Transition Center” and will feature a pledge welcoming all transitioning students and recognizing military-connected students and their families. Photo Credit: Department of Education

As a member of the K. Mark Takai Transition Center Network, we:

  • Understand the challenges that are an inherent part of matriculating into a new and unfamiliar school environment;
  • Welcome all students transitioning into our school, including military-connected students, and will support and sustain them throughout their time in our school community;
  • Recognize and honor our military personnel for the contributions and sacrifices they make for our defense and the preservation of our rights, and the sacrifices of our military families to support them;
  • Value the added richness and experience that students from varied cultural and social backgrounds bring to our school community; and
  • Commit to providing high-quality supports through dedicated resources via the establishment and sustained operation of a transition center on our school campus.

Schools interested in establishing a new Transition Center or upgrading existing Transition Center facilities should contact HIDOE Military Liaison Cherry Okahara at cherry_okahara@hawaiidoe.org.

Hawaii Department of Education Receives National Innovation Award From Education Commission of the States

The Education Commission of the States announced that the Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) is the 2017 recipient of the Frank Newman Award for State Innovation. The Commission sited the Department’s broadly-supported and impactful education improvement efforts, including focusing school accountability on students’ college and career readiness; teacher and education leader support across the state; development of a comprehensive longitudinal data system; and investing in data literacy as reasons why Hawaii received the award.

“Hawaii worked diligently to positively change the landscape of education in the state and dramatically improved and enhanced the structure of education in its schools, as well as outcomes for its students,” said Jeremy Anderson, president of Education Commission of the States. “The state’s thoughtfully constructed policies, reforms and capacity-building programs provide teachers and education leaders with opportunities to increase the potential for both their professional success, as well as the success of their students, and also support the state in achieving its education goals.”

HIDOE’s suite of data tools includes a longitudinal data system that provides educators with real-time access to data and even allows for targeting underperforming student populations. The Department’s accompanying long-term investment in data literacy is evidenced by their Formative Assessment/Data Team initiative which engages 11,000 teachers statewide to participate in grade-level or content-based data teams using formative assessment data to inform and improve instruction.

In 2013, the U.S. Department of Education approved the first iteration of HIDOE’s new accountability system, Strive HI, which shifted the system’s focus from 10th-grade proficiency to ensuring all students graduate ready to enter postsecondary institutions or the workforce. The accountability system extends beyond test scores to include broad measures, such as student growth, chronic absenteeism, college readiness and college-going. Results from the new accountability system showed increased college and career readiness from 2011 to 2015: 42 percent increase in the number of students taking Advanced Placement Exams; 74 percent increase in the number of students enrolling in Early College to earn University of Hawaii credits, and about one-third decrease of number of graduates needing remediation upon entering the University of Hawaii colleges.

Through its policy and program efforts, supported by a U.S. Department of Education Race to the Top grant, HIDOE developed a robust support system for its teachers and education leaders. One example is the statewide Induction and Mentoring Initiative, which pairs all first- and second-year teachers with an experienced mentor beginning their first day. This investment increased the five-year teacher retention rate, which rose over six years from 44 percent (2004 hires) to 52 percent (2010 hires). Additionally, HIDOE and the Hawaii State Teacher’s Association agreed to a progressive performance evaluation system based on evidence of both teachers’ practice and student learning and growth. To support school leaders, the Leadership Institute provides training programs with relevant and coherent curricula to the different leadership role groups, which better equips leaders to achieve success in their roles.

“This honor is a testament to the perseverance of our school leaders, teachers and community partners who supported the department in our effort to raise rigor and expectations for our students,” shared Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “Thank you to Education Commission of the States for recognizing our hard work and the progress we made transforming public education for Hawaii’s students.”

Education Commission of the States will present Hawaii with the award at the 2017 National Forum on Education Policy, taking place June 28-30 in San Diego.

The Frank Newman Award for State Innovation recognizes a state for any of the following:

  • Education improvement efforts that are replicable and hold valuable lessons for other states.
  • Bold and courageous policies, including existing approaches with evidence of significant impact on student achievement in the state.

Policies or programs that have bipartisan, broad-based support.

These significant efforts to improve education honor the late Frank Newman. For more information about the award, click here.

Hawaii Department of Education Announces New Partnership with Tahiti Schools

The Hawaii State Department of Education brought together education leaders, teachers and students to celebrate the homecoming of Hōkūleʻa announce a newly signed agreement between the Department and Tahiti’s Ministry of Education that will carry on the mission of Mālama Honua.

Nainoa Thompson shared a message to educators about the importance of the “Promise to Children,” and the journey it took to get to the launch of the worldwide voyage. Photo Credit: Department of Education

After implementing nearly four years of lessons connected to the Worldwide Voyage of Hōkūleʻa, the Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) will engage in a formalized partnership with Tahiti schools. Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi today made the announcement to education leaders, teachers and students who have incorporated Mālama Honua into their learning.

The shared agreement was established last month during a meeting that coincided with Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia’s arrival in Tahiti. Master Navigator Nainoa Thompson also attended the meeting.

“Tahiti and Hawai’i currently enjoy student exchanges through our respective network of schools,” said Superintendent Matayoshi. “Tahiti’s Education Minister and I signed a commitment to help facilitate these exchanges through a teacher exchange program; to share strategies and curriculum, and lastly start to develop a digital network of resource sharing between schools.”

Superintendent Matayoshi stressed that the work done by educators is the “Education Wa’a” of the Mālama Honua journey. She addressed educational leaders, teachers, and partners this morning at Chaminade University’s Clarence T.C. Ching Conference Center.

The program included a recap of highlights from Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia’s port visits to school projects that incorporated Mālama Honua such as school gardens, community clean ups, environmental research and revitalization and video projects.

King William Lunalilo Elementary Principal Amy Kantrowitz noted, “There has been a change in the mindset of our students, they are much more aware of their responsibility to care for our Island Earth, to care for our culture and each other. That’s what we’ve been instilling these past few years – it’s not just an activity, it’s a way of thinking.”

During the gathering, Thompson shared a message to educators about the importance of the “Promise to Children,” and the journey it took to get to the launch of the worldwide voyage.

“It must’ve been five years ago that I had a meeting with Superintendent Matayoshi, and we talked about an idea about sailing around connecting it to education – strengthening education,” shared Thompson. “I want to thank her for her vision and her trust. We would never have taken the risk of the voyage unless we knew it would be worth it.”

Thompson stated once Hōkūleʻa returns home, the mission will continue with a statewide sail to visit 100 schools.

The “Promise to Children” was established in November 2013 and signed by educational leaders and hundreds of individuals in support of the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s worldwide voyage and the mission of Mālama Honua. The agreement emphasized that lessons passed along to students will inspire them to explore, discover and learn about the Island Earth.

For more information about HIDOE’s integration of the Promise to Children and Mālama Honua into its schools and curriculum, click here.

Hawaii Teachers May Plan Trips and Serve as Chaperones with Private Tour Companies

The Hawaii State Ethics Commission announced it reached an agreement with HSTA regarding teachers serving as chaperones on school-related trips. Under the agreement, teachers may continue to plan trips and serve as chaperones with private tour companies.

This morning the Hawaii State Ethics Commission (Ethics Commission) announced it reached an agreement with the Hawaii State Teachers Association regarding teachers serving as chaperones on school-related trips. Under the agreement, teachers may continue to plan trips and serve as chaperones with private tour companies. However, this is subject to Board of Education policies.

Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi issued the following statement regarding the agreement.

Teachers work hard to create these educational opportunities that go beyond the classroom. For many of our students, these trips are the first time they’ve traveled beyond their communities. We’re pleased about this news and look forward to working with the Board of Education in creating clear guidance for our schools to ensure these trips meet the requirements of the Ethics Commission.

Hawaii Fourth and Eighth Graders Show Improvement in Science in National Assessment

The Nation’s Report Card: 2015 Science assessment, released today by the National Assessment Governing Board and the National Center for Education Statistics, shows Hawaii’s fourth and eighth graders are making progress.

For grade 4, the average scale score of 146 was six points higher than the score of 140 in 2009.  For grade 8, the average scale score of 144 was five points higher than the score of 139 in 2009.

naepHawaii’s gains in science exceeded national gains, but Hawaii’s scores remain currently lower than the average scale scores for national public schools, as are Hawaii’s percentages of students achieving at or above proficient and at or above basic levels.

“These results validate the gains that we reported earlier this month as part of our Hawaii Science assessments,” said Kathryn Matayoshi, HIDOE Superintendent.  “Now, with the recent adoption of Next Generation Science Standards, our schools are moving towards a more engaging approach to learning science where we expect the science instruction to connect with understanding the world around them and prepare them for community, career and college.”

NAEP achievement levels are set by the National Assessment Governing Board.  “Basic” indicates partial mastery of prerequisite grade-level knowledge and skills that are fundamental for proficient work.  “Proficient” represents competency over complex subject matter and may go beyond the grade level tested, and “Advanced” stands for superior performance.

NAEP is a congressionally mandated project of the U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics.  NAEP reports are located at http://nationsreportcard.gov.

Hawaii Awarded $1.5 Million from U.S. Department of Education to Improve Schools in Need

The U.S. Department of Education (DoED) announced today that the Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) will receive $1.5 million in School Improvement Grants (SIG). Priority schools in a number of states are recipients of the grant as part of the Elementary & Secondary Education Act (ESEA). The program will be phased out next school year with the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).

doe-logo“Providing the additional supports to schools that need it most is key to their success,” said Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi. “We’ve seen the impact extended learning opportunities and professional development for teachers have made. In order to make improvements, we need to provide schools resources. This grant allows us the opportunity to move forward.”

In school year (SY) 2013-14, Waianae Elementary used SIG funds towards extending the school year to enable teachers to participate in professional development and students to learn for an additional 300 minutes each week. Most recently, Waianae Elementary was one of the participating Priority schools actively involved in the national Turnaround Arts Program. The initiative provided monies for in-school Professional Development (PD) embedding the arts into curriculum, summer leadership programs and supplies. At the end of SY 2016, some of the students participating in the program were invited to perform at the White House Turnaround Arts Talent Show.

Dole Middle School received funds in SY 2014-15, which was used to focus on four main areas: 1) development of a multi-tiered System of Instruction and Intervention; 2) increasing student engagement through the integration of technology; 3) increasing PD opportunities for faculty and staff; and 4) building a positive school climate that is safe and conducive to student learning.

Dole used part of the monies to host their first annual Middle School Conference where staff members including teachers, educational assistants and custodians, complex, and Title I State personnel, were invited to participate and share best practices. Similar to Waianae Elementary, Dole students benefitted from extended learning opportunities, while teacher rewards ranged from recognition to attendance to national conferences. Dole combined other resources (Uplinks, Title I, Hawaii Keiki Nurse and other community partnerships) allowing for implementation of the middle school philosophy and addressing student needs.

This year, Kekaha Elementary is an applicant for the part of the $1.5 million awarded to HIDOE. The Department and school are currently in the process of negotiating a Memorandum of Understanding with the Hawaii State Teachers Association on how to best utilize the funds.

“We have seen a major shift in the campus culture these past three years including more parent involvement and better student engagement because of the programs and services we have been able to provide through the grant,” shared Waianae Elementary Principal Wendy Takahashi. “The partnerships we have gained through this opportunity from the Hawaii Arts Alliance to celebrities like Jack Johnson, Paula Fuga and Alfre Woodard has helped to energize our students, teachers and school community.”

The SIG program has invested more than $7 billion to transform some of the country’s lowest performing schools. Nationwide, the efforts have been credited with the decline in dropout rates and an increase in graduation rates.

Dept. of Education Reminds Parents to Secure Vehicles in School Parking Lots

The Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) reminds parents to always secure their vehicles in school parking lots to prevent thefts.  Five vehicle break-ins using similar methods of entry have occurred at East Oahu public schools in September during after-school hours.  In each case, vehicle windows were broken and small items inside were stolen, including purses, bags, cell phones and laptop computers.

break-in

“Parents are reminded to be vigilant and always remove valuables or hide them from direct sight,”said HIDOE spokesperson Donalyn Dela Cruz.  “Although there is normally lots of activity on campuses during afterschool hours, such crimes of opportunity can take place in seconds, especially when valuables are left in plain sight.”

Parents can take actions to make their vehicle less attractive to property theft, including avoiding leaving valuables inside in open view, locking valuables in the trunk and installing anti-theft alarm systems.  Bags, such as backpacks and shopping bags, may be seen as a carrier of valuables by thieves and should be hidden from view.

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.

Hawaii Department of Education Releases Annual Financial Audit

The Hawaii State Department of Education (DOE) today released its Annual Financial Audit for the 2014 fiscal year (FY 2014) which shows the Department is doing a better job at keeping its finances in order.

Click to view the report

Click to view the report

The independent report analyzed financial statements of the public school system, including operating, capital improvement and federal funds. The DOE’s FY 2014 audit was submitted last month to the Federal Audit Clearinghouse, which operates on behalf of the Office of Management and Budget.

The DOE’s financial audit provides an objective third-party examination of the presentation of the Department’s financial statements for the most recent fiscal year, coordinated by the State of Hawaii’s Office of the Auditor​.​The DOE elects to maintain a separate, independent audit, rather than being incorporated with a single State of Hawaii audit.

“Annual independent audits are crucial to ensure taxpayers’ funds are being monitored and maximized to support teaching and learning in the most efficient way,” said DOE Senior Assistant Superintendent and Chief Financial Officer Amy Kunz. “The findings validate our financial controls and provide guidance for improvement in some areas.”

The 65-page audit report published by Honolulu-based N&K CPA Inc. reviewed the DOE’s $1.494 billion general fund appropriation for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2014. It concluded internal controls examined are appropriately structured to prevent or detect financial misstatements, and found the DOE to be in compliance with requirements of major federal programs.

Auditors noted “opportunities for strengthening internal controls and operating efficiency.” Kunz says the Office of Fiscal Service has already moved to address the recommendations as outlined in the findings, including:

  • ​Adjusted the calculation of vacation and sick leave accrual for a small portion of  teachers to align with the correct fiscal year.
  • Strengthened accounting procedures for new federal grant payments to ensure  accurate reporting.

During the last four years, the DOE has also increased its internal audits to identify areas in need of improved controls. This move aligns with the DOE/Board of Education joint Strategic Plan​, which calls for effective organizational,​​ financial, human, and community resources in support of student success.

Hawaii Parents Informed of Higher Learning Expectations for Public School Students

Public schools across the state today welcomed back students after a three-week winter break. Students were given a letter to take home to their parents as a reminder of the upcoming spring assessments for English language arts and math.

Click to read letter

Click to read letter

The new assessments, known as Smarter Balanced, are aligned to the Hawaii Common Core standards implemented statewide at the start of the school year. The letter from Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi also included sample exercises explaining how students are being asked deeper questions that require critical thinking.

“New expectations for student learning mean we need new ways to measure how our students are performing,” stated Superintendent Matayoshi. “These new tests measure not only what students know, but also how well they can apply their knowledge in real-world situations.”

Smarter Balanced assessments will be administered beginning in March to students in grades three through eighth and high school juniors to measure their reading, math, writing, listening, research and thinking skills. Hawaii is a governing member of a multi-state consortium that has worked with teachers, parents and higher education faculty to develop the Smarter Balanced assessments. Over three million students across the consortium participated in the field test last year to ensure questions are valid, reliable and fair for all students.

“While this is a step forward in our plans to raise student achievement, we expect the change to the new test will result in lower scores as compared to previous years,” said Superintendent Matayoshi. “However, because it is a new test aligned to new standards, we will not be comparing the results to that of the old test. Results from this year are a new starting point for students.”

The results also benefit teachers. The Smarter Balanced Assessment System offers information during the year to give teachers and parents a better picture of where students are thriving and where they need help.

A number of schools held Smarter Balanced parent nights with activities during the fall. The parent letter includes additional assessment examples and tips for helping with homework.

For more information on how the Hawaii State Department of Education is striving higher with new learning standards and assessments, visit HawaiiPublicSchools.org.