(BIVN) – A Keaukaha-based Hawaiian language school without a permanent home is one step closer to securing a new location.
Ka ʻUmeke Kāʻeo public charter school got the preliminary OK from the county for a new elementary school, to be located on the corner of Kalanikoa and Kuawa Street in Hilo.
The Hawaiian language school got a preliminary Use Permit approval from the Windward Planning Commission on Thursday. The permit will allow the establishment of the elementary school (grades K-2) “for 100 students, six ( 6) teachers and four (4) operations and support staff in an existing facility situated on 1.2042 acres of land within the Industrial – Commercial Mixed Use – 20, 000 square foot (MCX-20) zoned district,” planning documents say.
The school will now occupy a space that had to be vacated by a church.
“Our original home was at Keaukaha elementary school,” principal Olani Lilly told the commission. “We’ve been there for about thirty years. And then we needed to move. And so we did a hustle. As we looked out into Hilo we wanted to remain in Keaukaha, because in our mission it states that Keaukaha is our learning laboratory. Our keiki do a lot of research up and down that coastline.”