Hawaii State Department of Education (HIDOE) Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi and Hiroshima Prefecture Superintendent Kuniaki Shimozaki signed a Statement of Intent on Education Cooperation this morning at Washington Place. This agreement builds on an existing Sister-State relationship and focuses on educating for global competence.
"Hawaii has a long history with Japan and today's agreement with the Hiroshima Prefecture is a testament to the friendship and ongoing educational efforts for today's generation to experience meaningful cultural exchange," said Superintendent Matayoshi. "We look forward to the results of this partnership and the impact that it will have on our students and teachers."
Dignitaries attended the event from Hawaii and Hiroshima including First Lady Dawn Amano-Ige, Consul General Yasushi Misawa, Consul Megumi Otsuka, Senator Brian Taniguchi, and president of the Honolulu Hiroshima Kenjin Kai Wayne Miyao.
During the ceremony, Superintendent Shimozaki spoke of Hiroshima's historic relationship with the 50th State saying, "I have come to Hawaii with the desire to pass on strong bonds built by those who came before us and a relationship of friendship that has continued for over 150 years since the first people from Hiroshima began to immigrate to Hawaii. The Statement of Intent agreement will promote educational, friendly exchanges, and mutual understanding between Hiroshima and Hawaii."
The Statement of Intent on Education Cooperation formally acknowledges the cultural and educational benefits gained through establishing a formal relationship between the school districts, and signifies that both states will collaborate to expand these opportunities. In 2017, as part of this agreement, Hawaii and Hiroshima will be launching a Teacher Abroad Exchange Program to support teacher training and exchange between schools.
There are currently 11 high schools in Hawaii that have sister schools in Hiroshima including Aiea (Inokuchi High), Moanalua (Kokutaiji High), Roosevelt (Yasunishi High), Kalani (Koyo High), Kalaheo (Otake High), Campbell (Sogo Gijutsu High), Kaiser (Kannabe Asahi High), Mililani (Fuchu High), Waipahu (Fukuyama Iyo High), Kapolei (Fuchu Higashi High) and Honokaa (Kake High).
For more information and to view the Statement of Intent on Education Cooperation, visit www.hawaiipublicschools.org.