By David Corrigan & Stephanie Salazar
PAPAIKOU, Hawaii: In Hamakua Coast news, School Principal Joyce Iwashita was honored during a special assembly on Monday.
Iwashita heads the Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalaniana‘ole Elementary and Intermediate School in Papaikou.
The assembly was held just days before Iwashita travels to Washington, D.C. where she will be honored by the National Distinguished Principals Program at a ceremony on October 21. Iwashita is among other principals from across the nation who will be honored.
In April, Iwashita was awarded Hawaii’s 2011 National Distinguished Principal. She was selected out of seven nominees by committee through a process conducted by the Hawai‘i Elementary and Middle School Administrators Association.
According to a state senate press release, Kalanianaole School showed dramatic improvements in its student performance under Iwashita’s leadership. From 2004 to 2011, the percentage of students testing proficient in reading rose from 38 percent to 67 percent. In math, it rose from 9 percent to 67 percent.