HONOLULU – The Hawaii State Board of Education (BOE) and the Department of Education (DOE) today reaffirmed their commitment to Hawaiian Education and Hawaiian Immersion programs in Hawaii’s public schools.
The BOE approved key policy changes affirming that Hawaiian language, culture and history should be an integral part of Hawaii’s educational standards for all students in grades K-12.
Hawaiian Education policy 2104 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.”
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 policy revisions.
“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,” explained BOE Student Achievement Committee Chairwoman Cheryl Kauhane Lupenui. “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, including six at charter schools. The proposed amendments to BOE policy 2104 and 2105 can be viewed on the BOE’s General Business Meeting on the BOE site.