Hawaii Senate Advances Bills Investing in Education

The Hawaii State Senate’s Committee on Ways and Means (WAM) today advanced bills that support Hawaii’s keiki through a variety of education initiatives. If passed, the measures would restore funds to support school athletic programs, improve the learning environment for students and invest in Hawaii charter schools.

capital

“Hawaii’s keiki are our greatest resource and it’s important that we give them every advantage for a better future,” said Senator David Ige, chairman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee. “To do that, we need to invest in every aspect of their education from academics to athletics to their learning environment.”

These measures will go to the Senate floor for third reading and if approved will move to the House for consideration.

The education measures passed today include:

SB2424 SD1: RELATING TO AIR CONDITIONING

Requires the department of education and department of accounting and general services, in consultation with the Hawaii state energy office of the department of business, economic development, and tourism and the Hawaii natural energy institute of the University of Hawaii, to develop a cooling master strategy and comprehensive study for the public schools and to report findings to the 2015 regular session of the legislature. Appropriates funds.

SB3083 SD1: RELATING TO SCHOOL ATHLETICS.

Appropriates general funds for fiscal year 2014-2015 for the school athletics program of the department of education. Authorizes additional coaching and assistant coaching positions for fiscal year 2014-2015 for the school athletics program.

SB2516 RELATING TO FACILITIES FUNDING FOR CHARTER SCHOOLS

Appropriates funds for the state public charter school commission to allocate to charter schools for facilities projects based, in part, on the need and performance of the charter schools. Requires annual reporting to the legislature.

SB2517 RELATING TO CHARTER SCHOOLS

Authorizes the state public charter school commission to request the issuance of general obligation bonds from the director of finance and to allocate the proceeds for the design, planning, construction, repair, and maintenance of public charter school facilities. Creates a working group to determine criteria for and to prioritize the allocation of general obligation bond proceeds to the public charters schools. Specifies that public charter school facilities funded through the proceeds of general obligation bonds are owned by the State. Requires the state public charter school commission to report annually to the legislature. Authorizes the issuance of general obligation bonds to the state public charter school commission. Repeals on June 30, 2024.

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Crew for Second HI-SEAS Mission Announced – Next Extended Simulation of Mars Exploration Begins March 28

The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa has announced the crew for the second mission of the Hawai‘i Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HI-SEAS) program. The next extended simulation of Mars exploration here on Earth begins March 28.

HI-Seas photo by Angelo Vermeulen

HI-Seas photo by Angelo Vermeulen

“The upcoming mission is focused on the social, interpersonal, and cognitive factors that affect team performance over time,” said Kim Binsted, associate professor at UH Mānoa and principal investigator for the next three HI-SEAS missions planned for 2014 and 2015.  “Hawai‘i provides a unique setting to simulate the challenging conditions for human exploration to Mars. We have selected a strong crew for our next four-month study.”

The site is set up at an undisclosed location on Mauna Kea.

The site is set up at an undisclosed location on Mauna Kea.

HI-SEAS crew members were required have “astronaut-like characteristics,” including the ability to pass a Class 2 flight physical examination and undergraduate training as a scientist or engineer. The youngest crew member is 26; the oldest is 60 years old.  Like the astronaut mission specialists they represent, each participant is expected to bring a significant research project or other scholarly work of his or her own to complete while inside the space analog habitat.

The six crew members and the reserve (alternate) member are:

  • Ross Lockwood – A PhD candidate in condensed matter physics at the University of Alberta. Ross is from Winfield, British Columbia, Canada.
  • Casey Stedman – An officer in the US Air Force Reserve. Born in Vermont, Casey now considers Washington his home.
  • Ronald Williams – Director of the Neuropsychology Department at Fort Wayne Neurological Center, Indiana. Ron holds a PhD in Neuropsychology and is from Bloomington, Indiana.
  • Tiffany Swarmer – Research assistant studying human factors and performance for long-duration space missions at the University of North Dakota’s Human Spaceflight Laboratory.  Tiffany was born at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland.
  • Lucie Poulet – A PhD candidate at the Institute of Space Systems at the German Aerospace Center.  Lucie designs hybrid lighting systems for greenhouses to enhance plant growth and is from the Lorraine region of France.
  • Anne Caraccio – A NASA researcher developing a method of turning waste from space missions into useable gases for fuel/propulsion, environmental control, and life support systems. Anne is from Bellmore, New York.
  • (Reserve crew member) James Sakai, a mechanical engineer and Captain in the US Army Reserve, is from Rupert, Idaho.

During the upcoming study, researchers from outside of the HI-SEAS habitat will monitor the six crew members isolated inside the solar-powered dome at a remote site at 8,000 feet elevation on the slopes of Mauna Loa.  The researchers will evaluate the crew’s communications strategies, crew workload and job-sharing, and conflict resolution/conflict management approaches to determine the most important factors for the success of a long-duration space mission.

Food inventory by Sian

Food inventory by Sian

This mission follows on the heels of a successful 2013 Mars food study, which simulated the experience of astronauts on a real planetary mission and compared two types of food systems:  crew-cooked vs. pre-prepared.

More information, photos, and full biographies for the 2014 crew members are available on the HI-SEAS website at http://hi-seas.org/.  Members of the media can download high-resolution photos from the previous HI-SEAS mission at:  http://go.hawaii.edu/GQ

For more information, visit: http://hi-seas.org/

Public Invited to the Ocean Day Mālama Kanaloa Festival

The public is invited to the 7th annual University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Ocean Day Mālama Kanaloa Festival on Sunday, March 9, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Hilo’s Bayfront Beach Park.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

This free, event is hosted by the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo’s Pacific Island Programs for Exploring Science (PIPES) in partnership with the County of Hawaiʻi, EPSCoR Hawaiʻi IMUA III, UH Hilo Student Activities Council, UH Hilo Student Association, Board of Media Broadcasting, Board of Student Publications, and the University of Hawai’i Sea Grant.

Since its debut as Ocean Day in 2007, the festival has become a popular community event, drawing crowds in excess of 2,000 participants. Volunteer Coordinator Amelie Sterling says the event also serves as an important learning resource for students.

“Ocean Day is a great volunteer opportunity for students to gain a service learning experience as well as enhance their resumes and build skills for the future,” Sterling said. “Some faculty members even offer it as an opportunity for students to gain extra credit or fulfill a community service requirement within their course.”

The Ocean Day Mālama Kanaloa Festival is focused on increasing awareness of ocean and coastal issues such as conservation, sustainable use of resources and ocean safety through interactive displays, activities and booths. Activities include fishing games, marine critter touch tanks, craft making, makahiki games, face painting, poi-pounding, seed planting, marine debris displays, and more. The event also showcases ongoing research while providing opportunities to interact with people interested in working together to care for island and ocean communities.

For more information, email: UHpipes@hawaii.edu or call Amelie Sterling at 933-0707.

Hawaii Joins National Invasive Species Awareness Week

The State of Hawaii will participate in National Invasive Species Awareness Week (NISAW). Gov. Neil Abercrombie will kick off the 2nd annual Hawaii Invasive Species Awareness Week (HISAW) with a proclamation on March 3 at 9 a.m. in the Capitol Auditorium.

National Invasive Species Awareness Week

Gov. Abercrombie has made invasive species an administration priority by supporting his cabinet to work across departments as members of the HISC and endorsing 2014 legislative initiatives proposing up to $5 million to meet operating costs of Invasive Species Programs.

“Protecting our islands from the threat of invasive species remains a top priority,” Gov. Abercrombie said in this year’s State of the State address. “We are experiencing a biological crisis involving a multitude of invaders ranging from the little fire ant and coconut rhinoceros beetle, which can harm our animals and trees, to parasites attacking coffee crops. Each represents a deadly threat to our isolated ecosystem, natural resources, and economy, and I ask for the public’s engagement in addressing this menace.”

The Hawaii Invasive Species Council (HISC), the interagency board created by the Legislature to provide cabinet-level direction on invasive species issues, is coordinating a series of events and activities, open to the public, in recognition of Hawaii Invasive Species Awareness Week in partnership with the Coordinating Group on Alien Pest Species, county-based Invasive Species Committees, Division of Aquatic Resources, Hawaii Biodiversity Information Network, and The Nature Conservancy.

HISAW Kickoff at the Capitol, March 3, 9 a.m. – noon, Capitol Auditorium

  • Governor’s Proclamation: The public is invited to join Governor Abercrombie in commencing Hawaii Invasive Species Awareness Week. HISC Co-Chairs, Scott Enright (Hawaii Department of Agriculture) and William J. Aila, Jr. (Department of Land and Natural Resources) will also offer opening remarks.
  • HISC Awards Ceremony: The HISC will honor individuals, agencies, organizations, and businesses that have made a difference in protecting Hawaii from the impacts of invasive species. Members of the Legislature will present the awards in the categories of Hottest Hotline Report, Business Leader, Community Hero, County MVP’s, and Greatest Hit of 2013. See full list of winners and honorable mentions at: http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/hisc/hisaw/
  • Participation and Information Booths: presented by Department of Land and Natural Resources’ Division of Aquatic Resources and Division of Forestry and Wildlife, Department of Agriculture, Malama Maunaloa, Koolau Mountains Watershed Partnership, Waianae Mountains Watershed Partnership, Oahu Army Natural Resource Program, Oahu Invasive Species Committee, University of Hawaii, and more.
  • Be a Beetle Buster & Help Save Hawaii’s Coconut Trees: March 3 kick-off

People across the state can easily participate in HISAW online by joining this special “mission” to survey all coconut trees in Hawaii for the Coconut Rhinoceros Beetle. The public is invited to take photos of the crowns of coconut trees and post them to the “Help Save Hawaii’s Coconut Trees” mission on the Project Noah website or via mobile app. The photos will be reviewed by the Beetle Buster Team from the University of Hawaii Natural Resources and Environmental Management class to assess the presence or absence of this pest across the state. Adult rhino beetles bore into the crowns of coconut trees to drink the sap, leaving distinctive v-shaped cuts in the leaves when the fronds grow out. They could kill half the coconut trees in the state, if they aren’t detected and eradicated. The Beetle Buster Team will flag photos that show suspected beetle damage for follow up surveys. The project will go live on Monday, March 3. For more information and instructions on how to participate, go to: http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/hisc/hisaw/

Volunteer Events: Occurring statewide from March 3 to 9
Visit the Hawaii Invasive Species Awareness Week website at http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/hisc/hisaw/ for a full list of volunteer activities across the state. Opportunities include:

  • Helping clear invasive weeds along the Kaluapuhi Trail in Kokee (March 5)
  • Learning about invasive species issues in Hawaii at the Paintballs and Digital Mapping Talk Story, Kealia Pond National Wildlife Refuge (March 7)
  • Removing invasive species at Lyon Arboretum (March 8)
  • Pulling weeds on the offshore islet of Mokuauia (March 8)
  • Pulling weeds in the Koolau Mountains (March 9)
  • Helping to restore Mauna Kea (throughout March)

To learn more about NISAW, visit http://www.nisaw.org. To learn more about the local-level HISAW, visit http://dlnr.hawaii.gov/hisc/hisaw/

The Hawaii Invasive Species Council (HISC) is a cabinet-level interagency collaboration mandated by Chapter 194, Hawaii Revised Statutes. It is co-chaired by the Department of Land and Natural Resources and the Department of Agriculture with additional voting members from the Departments of Health, Transportation, and Business, Economic Development and Tourism, and the University of Hawaii. The HISC approves an annual budget to support invasive species prevention, control, and public outreach projects across the state. http://www.hawaiiinvasivespecies.org

Kamehameha Schools Hawaii Middle School Band & Keiki Choir California Schedule

The Kamehameha Schools Hawai’i Middle School Band & Keiki Choir will be performing in California over the Spring Break.  Here is their schedule of public performances.
California Flier

Please feel free to forward this to your friend’s and ʻohana that live in the area. We would love to see them and I am sure they would enjoy the mele of Hawaiʻi brought to them by our Keiki.

Big Island Press Club Offering Scholarships

The Big Island Press Club (BIPC) is pleased to announce the availability of scholarships for eligible students pursuing higher education in the field of journalism or a related field.

Big Island Press Club Image

BIPC annually offers: $1,000 Bill Arballo Scholarship, $500 Yukino Fukubori Memorial Scholarship, $500 Jack Markey Memorial Scholarship, $1,500 Robert C. Miller Memorial Scholarship and the $1,000 Marcia Reynolds Scholarship. Last year, BIPC awarded a total of $4,600 to five Hawaii Island students at the annual scholarship dinner in Hilo.

Awards are determined by the BIPC Scholarship Committee to qualified applicants.

To qualify, applicants must:

  • Have residential ties to the Big Island
  • Express a clear interest in and aptitude for a career in journalism or a related field
  • Be pursuing a degree in journalism or a related field and enrolled full time at an accredited college or university
  • Maintain a strong record of academic achievement.

Application forms and instructions are available at the BIPC website: http://www.BigIslandPressClub.org <http://www.BigIslandPressClub.org> and will be available from high school counselors at Big Island public and private high schools. The deadline to apply for the 2014 scholarships is April 15; applications must be postmarked by this date.

UH Hilo Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Moving to San Francisco State University

San Francisco State University announced today the appointment of Luoluo Hong as vice president for student affairs. Hong currently serves as vice chancellor for student affairs and associate professor at the University of Hawaii at Hilo, a position she has held since 2008. Her previous positions include dean of student affairs for the West Campus of Arizona State University and dean of students at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. She will begin her tenure at SF State on May 1.

Photo of Luoluo Hong, just appointed vice president for student affairs

Luoluo Hong

“I am thrilled to welcome Dr. Hong to SF State. Her passion for student success and well-being, her commitment to fostering a collaborative environment and her infectious, enthusiastic love of higher education make her the ideal person to join my leadership team and to serve as the University’s senior student affairs officer,” said President Leslie E. Wong.

“I cannot sufficiently express how honored I am to be joining President Wong’s leadership team and to be serving the students at SF State,” Hong said. “This is a tremendous opportunity for me on both a personal and professional level at this point in my life. The vision, mission and forward trajectory for SF State is truly inspiring and exciting, and I cannot wait to get started in my new role.”

Hong will succeed Jo Volkert, who has served as interim vice president for student affairs and enrollment management since fall 2012.  “I am grateful to Dr. Volkert for her leadership in furthering the activities of the division. She represents SF State’s best commitment to student success in so many ways,” Wong said.

As the University’s vice president for student affairs, Hong will manage a budget of approximately $60 million and will lead a team responsible for a broad portfolio of student support services and related programs, which currently includes: student outreach and incoming student programs; residential life; career development; student life; services to students and employees with disabilities; student conduct and ethical development; student health and psychological counseling; student leadership and multicultural  development; student recreation and fitness; admissions, records and enrollment management; financial aid; university police; emergency preparedness; parking and transportation services; and the vice president’s management office.

Hong has a proven record of leadership, demonstrated by various successful initiatives that have leveraged partnerships between academic affairs and student affairs to further student success. At the University of Hawaii, Hong worked with faculty and staff to design and implement a guaranteed academic scheduling system for first-year students. She instituted an intrusive advising program aimed at identifying students in distress and then working to ensure their progress and well-being. She has worked to establish clear articulation pathways so that students from community colleges could achieve bachelor’s degrees. She has also developed and implemented a comprehensive summer bridge program for first-generation Hawaii Island students that included math and writing instruction and improved participants’ retention rates. While at UH Hilo, she also oversaw the completion of three major construction projects: a state-of-the art campus recreation facility, a 300-bed suite-style residence hall and a one-stop student services center.

In addition to her administrative leadership roles, Hong is also an accomplished teacher and scholar. She has developed a record of scholarly activity including numerous publications, particularly in the areas of violence prevention, public health and social justice.

Hong earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Amherst College, a master’s degree in public health from Yale University and a Ph.D. in educational leadership and research from Louisiana State University–Baton Rouge.

Andrews Gymnasium Reopens

Repairs to Hilo’s Joseph G. Andrews Gymnasium have been completed, allowing the Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation to reopen the popular facility located within Waiākeawaena Park.

Photo of gym interior showing repaired and refurbished floor  Photo credit: Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation

Photo of gym interior showing repaired and refurbished floor
Photo credit: Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation

Old wax buildup was removed from the gym’s floor, which was then sanded and coated with a new layer of wax to protect the playing surface. New lines were painted to accommodate different sports, termite damage repaired and replacement basketball backboards installed. The Department of the Parks and Recreation’s Maintenance staff performed all of the work in-house.

Located at 33 West Kawailani Street, Andrews Gymnasium is open each Monday through Saturday, excluding holidays. Gym programs include the following youth activities:

  • Basketball Shooting Clinic (ages 9-14) Wednesdays 4 to 5:30 p.m.
  • Volleyball (ages 7-14) Thursdays 3:30 to 5 p.m.
  • Craft clubs (ages 5-12) Thursdays 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.
  • Speed and Agility workshops (ages 7-14) Saturdays 2 to 4 p.m.

For more information, please contact Maurice Janado at 959-9047.

Governor Abercrombie Releases $62.4 Million for Education Facilities Statewide

Gov. Neil Abercrombie today announced the release of more than $62.4 million for capital improvement projects (CIP) that will improve various Hawaii Department of Education (DOE) facilities across the state, while stimulating the economy and generating local jobs.

“These funds will help to create a better learning environment for our keiki and provide teachers with the tools they need to succeed,” Gov. Abercrombie said. “In the process, the funds will create work for hundreds in Hawaii.”

Kau High School

Allotment of funds for the following projects, identified by state legislators, has been approved by the Governor:

$36,365,000 – Improving and Maintaining Facilities and Infrastructure – Planning, design, construction and equipment to improve and maintain facilities and infrastructure for various schools statewide. DOE’s estimated backlog for repair and maintenance is at $265 million. These projects include general school building improvements, electrical upgrades and playground equipment repair, along with maintenance and other school repairs and renovations. Some of these funds will go to the overall repair project at the damaged Farrington High Auditorium.

$7,554,000 – Program Support – Planning, land, design, construction and equipment for program support at various schools statewide, including new/temporary facilities, improvements to existing facilities, ground and site improvements, and for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and gender equity. ADA projects include McKinley High, Baldwin High, Kohala Elementary and Honokaa High. Gender equity projects include Keaau High, Waiakea High and Waipahu High softball fields and Kahuku High and Intermediate girls’ athletic locker room. Funds will also complete construction of a locker room project at Lahainaluna High and complete design of a locker room at Konawaena Middle School.

$7,500,000 – Equity – Design and construction for equality projects to improve instructional spaces such as science labs, special education classroom renovations and classrooms on a statewide basis for classroom/learning environment parity. Equity projects also include energy improvements relating to heat abatement in classrooms.

$5,800,000 – Capacity – Plans, land, design, construction and equipment for capacity projects at various schools statewide nearing their enrollment capacity or are short of classroom space.

$5,200,000 – Staff Costs and Project Positions – Fiscal Year 2014 costs related to wages and fringe benefits for 60 project-funded permanent staff. The positions will provide the technical and clerical support necessary for the DOE to adequately address their CIP needs by moving its CIP project-funded staff to the vacant Liliuokalani Elementary in the near future.

Capital Improvement Funds Released for Kohala Elementary and Honoka’a High School

Senator Malama Solomon, District 4 – Hilo, Hamakua, Kohala, Waimea, Waikoloa, Kona, today commended the release of $7.73 million for various capital improvement projects (CIP) supporting student education in Hawaii.

Sen. Malama Solomon

Sen. Malama Solomon

Portions of these funds will go toward work in District 4, including:

  • Kohala Elementary, for American with Disabilities Act (ADA) projects, portion of $7,554,000
  • Kohala Elementary, for a special education portable, $80,000
  • Honoka‘a High School, for science lab upgrades, $100,000 for design work

“Supporting schools in my district is one of my main priorities as a lawmaker,” said Solomon. “The Legislature secured the funds for these very important projects last session and I’m glad to see the monies released so that work can get started. It’s imperative that we continue to provide students, teachers and staff with the resources for a favorable learning environment.”

Hawaiian Family AfFair to Honor Na Pua No`eau Alumni

Na Pua No`eau, the Center for Gifted and Talented Native Hawaiian Children, is calling on all of its former students to come and be recognized at this year’s 22nd Annual Hawaiian Family AfFair.

UH Hilo Moniker

The free, public event will be held on the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo campus on Saturday, March 1, from 9- 3 p.m. This year’s theme is “E Ola Koa: Living long and strong like a koa tree in the forest.”

Activities include various exhibit booths, free health screenings, a keiki fitness center, arts and crafts booths, make and take workshops, entertainment, food booths, and more.

More than 16,000 Native Hawaiian children from across the State and around the globe have participated in a Na Pua No`eau activity since its first event was held in 1990. The Center provides educational enrichment that guides students to learn through the Hawaiian culture.

“The best way to describe the program’s impact on students is that the students create a healthy life and lifestyle for themselves, their family and their community,” said Executive Director Dr. David Sing. “The Center helps them define and understand themselves as Hawaiians and to build a future that acknowledges and embraces who they are in the evolving world.”

Sing said the Center wants to celebrate the lives its alumni have made for themselves, their families and community. Approximately 18-percent of the native Hawaiian students currently attending UH Hilo and 17-percent attending Hawaiʻi Community College are products of the Na Pua No`eau pipeline.

For more information, call 974-7678.

Department of Education Convenes Working Group to Review “Pono Choices” – A Sexual Health Education Curriculum

The Hawaii State Department of Education (DOE) yesterday convened a working group to review Pono Choices, a sexual health education curriculum taught in some middle schools as part of a research study by the University of Hawaii’s (UH) Center on Disability Studies.

DOE ReleaseOn Feb. 4, at a regularly scheduled meeting of the Hawaii State Board of Education (BOE), a discussion of sexual health education curriculum drew additional comments regarding Pono Choices. The BOE received more than 100 written testimonies expressing concerns over the UH pilot curriculum. As a result, the DOE convened a working group comprised of diverse stakeholders to review Pono Choices and make a recommendation on whether it meets statutory requirements and applicable BOE policies regarding sexual health education curriculum.

The group, chaired by DOE Deputy Superintendent Ronn Nozoe, includes:

  • Darrin Araki, executive director, Hawaii Pastors Roundtable
  • Dr. Robert Bidwell, associate clinical professor of pediatrics and director of adolescent medicine, John A. Burns School of Medicine, UH Manoa
  • Karen Ginoza, representative of He’e Coalition and Faith Action for Community Equity (FACE)
  • Kimberly Kepner-Sybounmy, parent representative
  • Noella Kong, state adolescent health coordinator, Hawaii State Department of Health
  • Justin Mew, principal of Kaiser High School; former principal of Niu Valley Middle School and former science teacher
  • Donna Rodenhurst, health teacher, King Intermediate School
  • Kumu Hina Wong-Kalu, director of culture, Halau Lokahi Public Charter School

The working group meets again on Feb. 27 and welcomes public input through noon on Feb. 26 via email at hipublicschools@gmail.com. All feedback will be logged and shared with group members. Individuals should not resubmit testimony already provided to the BOE.

The working group will spend as much time as necessary to conduct a thorough review of Pono Choices prior to issuing a public report.

In November, the DOE temporarily placed Pono Choices on hold to address concerns about whether the curriculum was aligned with health education state law and policy. A subsequent UH review of its copyrighted curriculum concluded Pono Choices met the standards.

UH Hilo Students to be Featured at 2014 Ocean Sciences Meeting

Thirteen students from the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Marine Science Department and Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science (TCBES) Graduate Program will attend this year’s Ocean Science Meeting February 23-28 at the Hawaiʻi Convention Center in Honolulu.

Ocean Science Meeting

The meeting is the largest gathering of ocean scientists in the world and is expected to attract more than 5,000 people.

The students will be among presenters sharing the results of their research via posters and oral presentations. They will also showcase Hawaiʻi’s cultural heritage by performing a series of traditional Hawaiian chants, including a chant about voyaging that follows the introduction of the opening speaker, Dr. Elizabeth Kapu`uwailani Lindsey, who will be recognized and honored for her role as a way-finder.

The trip is sponsored by various scientific endeavors. Seven students have received travel grants from the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO) Multicultural Program. The other six are supported with funds from the Hawaiʻi EPSCoR grant.

Board of Education Sets Firm Support of Hawaiian Education

Today the Hawaii State Board of Education (BOE) and the Department of Education (DOE) reaffirmed its commitment to Hawaiian Education and Hawaiian Immersion programs in Hawaii’s public schools.

DOE ReleaseThe Hawaiian Education policy states “Hawaii’s public education system should embody Hawaiian values, language, culture and history as a foundation to prepare student in grades K-12 for success in college, career and communities, locally and globally.” Board policy 2104 affirms that Hawaiian language, culture, and history should be an integral part of Hawaii’s educational standards for all students in grades K-12.

BOE Chairperson Don Horner stated, “The policy strengthens our commitment to offer students the added value of a bilingual, bicultural based education. The curricula will have rigorous performance standards and be taught by a core of qualified, effective teachers. The goal is to graduate outstanding students that are highly proficient in both English and Hawaiian and are well prepared for college, career and contributors to community.”

The Board spent nearly one year working with stakeholders to craft the policy revisions. BOE Student Achievement Committee Chairperson, Cheryl Kauhane Lupenui explained that, “It was very important that stakeholders be an integral part of this process and the policies reflect the shared goals of the DOE and the community. We held more than 40 stakeholder meetings during the development process and at today’s meeting we received over 100 testimony in support of the policies.”

Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi stated, “The department looks forward to advancing Hawaiian education as an integral part of our public schools for all students.”

The state currently has 20 Hawaiian Immersion programs which includes six charter schools. The proposed amendments to BOE policy 2104 and 2105 are linked on our General Business Meeting agenda here on the BOE site.

Video: Kendama USA Hawaii Adventures – Volume 1

Recently the folks from Kendama USA came to Hawaii to put on a demonstration and show over on Oahu.  While the team was here they put together the following video:

Aloha!
Hawaii was amazing! I have never seen so many people playing Kendama in my life! 1800 people signed up to battle before we had to cut it off. 5000 people total were at the event. Choke players were there! It was great to get some time on Oahu an meet the people and the players. Hawaii is defiantly where it’s happenin. Amazing hospitality and kindness from everyone. Huge thank you to Razor Sports and Pearl Ridge Mall for their support and dedication. We will be back soon!

UH Hilo Student Gets in Fight With Step-Father at School – Both End Up in Hospital

The following assault was reported on the University of Hawaii Hilo crime logs.

UH Hilo Moniker

A male student engaged in a verbal disagreement with his Step-Father which escalated into a physical altercation which resulted in serious injuries. Both were transported to Hilo Medical Center for treatment. Hawaii Police Department, Fire, and EMT responded. HPD and Security initiated reports.

The incident occurred between 8:23 AM and 9:02 AM on Thursday, February 13, 2014 at the College Hall Parking lot located on Lanikaula Street.

The Opening Hula at Today’s Kamehameha School’s Ho’olaule’a

Here is one of my son’s hula performances he performed today at the Kamehameha Schools Ho’olaule’a:

He’s in the back row if you can’t figure it out.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park “After Dark in the Park” Events for March

Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park continues its tradition of sharing Hawaiian culture and After Dark in the Park programs with the community and visitors in March. All programs are free, but park entrance fees apply. Programs are co-sponsored by the Hawai‘i Pacific Parks Association, and your $2 donation helps support park programs.  Mark the calendar for these upcoming events:

Lava flows erupted from the Northeeast Rift Zone of Mauna Loa on March 25, 1984. USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory photo

Lava flows erupted from the Northeeast Rift Zone of Mauna Loa on March 25, 1984. USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory photo

From Ka‘ū to Kona: Stories of Lava Flows and Volcanic Landscapes. While driving between Ka‘ū and Kona, have you ever wondered about the prominent lava flows you see along Queen Ka‘ahumanu and Māmalahoa Highways?  If so, you are invited to join USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory scientists Jim Kauahikaua and Janet Babb on a virtual road trip, during which they will talk about the origin and history of lava flows along Highways 11 and 190, and recount the stories of people impacted by the eruptions that created the volcanic landscape we see today. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.
When: Tues., March 4 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium

‘Ohe Kapala Demonstration. ‘Ohe kapala, or bamboo stamps, were utilized to present many unique designs for traditional Hawaiian kapa.  Today, these exceptional designs are being used as patterns on all types of fabric. Join Keiko Mercado as she demonstrates how ‘ohe (bamboo) are carved into beautiful designs and how they are used. There will be samples and a hands-on opportunity to learn about this distinctive art form. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing ‘Ike Hana No‘eau “Experience the Skillful Work” workshops. Free.
When: Wed., March 12 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai

Ben Ka‘ili in Concert.
Hawaiian musician Ben Ka‘ili has dedicated his life to playing and promoting Hawaiian music. He has shared Hawaiian music at festivals, including the park’s 33rd annual cultural festival last July, and through concerts and performances for more than 20 years. Born on the Island of Hawai‘i, Ka‘ili started playing Hawaiian music at eight years old with his ‘ohana, including his uncle, George Lanakilakeikiahiali‘i Na‘ope. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing Nā Leo Manu “Heavenly Voices” presentations. Free.
When: Wed., March 19 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium

Mauna Loa: Eruptive History and Current Status of Earth’s Largest Active Volcano. March 25, 2014, marks the 30th anniversary of the most recent eruption of Mauna Loa, the largest active volcano on Earth. Mauna Loa comprises more than half of the surface area of Hawai‘i Island, and 95 percent of this volcano is covered with lava flows less than 10,000 years old.  Since 1843, Mauna Loa has erupted 33 times – and when it erupts, fast-moving and voluminous lava flows can reach the ocean in a matter of hours, severing roads and utilities, repaving the flanks of the volcano, and building new land.  Join USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologist Frank Trusdell as he talks about the eruptive history and current status of Mauna Loa, an active volcano that will undoubtedly erupt again—perhaps in your lifetime.  Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.
When: Tues., March 25 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium

Uhana Lauhala. Learn to weave a star from leaves of the pandanus tree. Join members of ‘Aha Pūhala o Puna as they share the art of lauhala weaving to perpetuate this Hawaiian art. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing ‘Ike Hana No‘eau “Experience the Skillful Work” workshops. Free.
When: Wed., March 26 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai

Office of Hawaiian Affairs Awards $1.5 Million for Charter Schools

The Board of Trustees of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) approved $1.5 million in emergency funding to seventeen Hawaiian-focused public charter schools for the 2013-2014 school year to address the budgetary shortfalls the schools have continued to face over the past five years.

The Nā Lei Na‘auao – Native Hawaiian Charter School Alliance (NLN) is truly grateful for OHA’s continued commitment to support these unique values-based models of education, that are at once ancient and modern. The schools’ successes validate NLN’s capacity to design and control the process of education dedicated to perpetuating Hawai‘i’s language, culture and traditions. The process helps the native learning communities honor the past, address the present and serve the future.

Haunani Seward, the Director of Ke Kula Ni’ihau ‘o Kekaha on Kaua’i explains, “Our culture is defined by our values.  When we learn our genealogy, we honor our ancestors.  When we recognize a place as piko, we aloha ʻāina.  Accepting and recognizing our leadership roles is kuleana and we mālama these relationships.  These beliefs are the kaula or rope that binds us together.  NLN captures this kaula, creating relevant curricula for today’s haumāna.  Whether through language, reforestation, hula drama, or sailing canoes, the outcome is ultimately the same – passing on these important cultural values.”

An innovative, culturally-driven educational approach, known as EA-Education with Aloha presents unprecedented potential to address the distinctive needs of Hawai’i’s largest, most undereducated major ethnic population.  The success of EA-Education with Aloha is also an indicator that Hawaiians can design, implement and evaluate quality models of education and that public school children in Hawai’i, particularly native Hawaiian students, should be given an option to choose Hawaiian-focused ways of education.  Furthermore through public, private partnerships and sharing of resources, we can develop a parallel system of education that is culturally-driven, family-oriented and community-based for all Hawai’i nei.

Research have confirmed that Hawaiians in charter schools perform better on standardized reading and math tests and are significantly less chronically absent than Hawaiians in standard public schools. NLN schools have high levels of school engagement and positive achievements due to culturally-grounded, strength-based approaches, which are sensitive to student and family needs.

Co-Administrator Allyson Tamura of Kanu o ka ‘Äina New Century Public Charter School (KANU), located in Waimea on the island of Hawai’i, is extremely appreciative for OHA’s continued support of Hawaiian-focused public charter schools.  “OHA’s support allows KANU to remain steadfast to our school’s vision and mission, positively impacting our students, staff, their families and our community.  Mahalo nui loa!”

OHA’s generous funding will support over 4,000 students at seventeen Hawaiian-focused public charter schools with enrollments that are up to 90-percent Hawaiian. These schools are located on the islands of Kauai, O‘ahu, Moloka‘i and Hawai’i Island.

OHA is a unique, independent state agency established through the Hawai‘i State Constitution and statutes to advocate for the betterment of conditions of all Native Hawaiians with a Board of Trustees elected by the voters of Hawai‘i. OHA is guided by a vision and mission to ensure the perpetuation of the culture, to protect the entitlements of Native Hawaiians, and to build a strong and healthy Hawaiian people and nation.

Kamehameha Schools to Purchase Buildings and Land Comprising the Hualalai Academy’s Campus – Kamehameha Schools Kona Campus???

Leaders from Kamehameha Schools and Hualalai Academy have signed a Letter of Intent that allows for a due diligence period for Kamehameha Schools to purchase the buildings and land comprising the Hualalai Academy’s campus.

Hualalai Academy

Hualalai Academy

“We only recently learned that this property was available to purchase so we are not prepared at this time to share more details,” said Dee Jay Mailer, CEO of Kamehameha Schools. “I can say, though, that we recognize and appreciate the good work and effort that the leadership, faculty and staff have dedicated to the Academy over the years in serving their community.”

Dr. Matthew James, President of Hualalai’s Board of Directors said, “We have as our priority the closure of our school in the best of ways, allowing us to meet our obligations to our students and families, our teachers and staff through the end of the school year. Having an offer from Kamehameha Schools is good news in that it allows us to cement our plans to successfully complete our school year and close school operations prior to turning over the facility.”

“We are excited by this opportunity,” CEO Mailer added. “However, our due diligence is just beginning and there is much to do before we conclude this transaction. In the meantime, we send our aloha and best wishes to the entire Hualalai Academy ‘ohana and the community they serve as they complete this most important school year.”