Hoʻohaʻaheo Newsletter, Aug. 2


Our weekly online publication to highlight bright spots from across the public school system. This issue kicks off the 2023-24 school year with a message from Superintendent.

Aug. 2

Editorial Mission: As the Department's primary publication, we aim to live up to the meaning of ha‘aheo – to cherish with pride – by bolstering and sustaining pride in public education and touting the successes happening across our system.

Editor's Note: We hope everyone had a great summer! Look forward to our award-winning newsletter returning every Wednesday.

Aloha, HIDOE Community!

Welcome to this week’s edition of the Ho‘oha‘aheo Newsletter.

Welcome to the 2023-24 School Year
As I shared in my welcome back video to educators, I’m excited to kick off the 2023-24 school year! This year, we’re implementing the new Board-approved Strategic Plan with three overarching priorities: high-quality learning for all students, high-quality educator workforce in all schools, and effective and efficient operations at all levels of the Department. There’s a lot of work ahead, but I know our united effort will have a lasting impact as we put the necessary supports in place to ensure all of our graduates are globally competitive and locally committed. Thank you for your commitment to elevating public education, and let’s have a fantastic year ahead!

Superintendent’s Report to the Board
Watch my July 2023 report to the Board of Education which shared updates – organized around the Strategic Plan priorities – on summer learning programs and preparations for the start of the 2023-24 school year. We’ll continue to share out these monthly updates.


Social media highlights of the most engaging posts of the week. Join the conversation by using the #HIPublicSchoolsProud hashtag and a chance to be featured!

» On this day in #HIDOEHistory, Kapolei High opened to 375 freshmen. The Home of the Hurricanes graduated their first class in June 2004.

» Take a peek inside Campbell's Saber Elite Summer Camp for Athletes, one of the eight athletic camps that took place this summer.

» Daniel K. Inouye Elementary’s administration team presented at the 2023 Back to School forum as an Army-impacted public school.

Welcome to the 2023-24 School Year

The 2023 Hawai‘i State Teacher of the Year Dr. Michael Ida shares his story and a special welcome message for our wonderful HIDOE teachers!

Important Dates and
Upcoming Events

  • Aug. 1-4 - Teacher Work Days (no students)
  • Aug. 7 - First official day for students (check with your child’s school)

Community Query

Which federal agency maintains a worldwide list of endangered animals?
  1. World Wildlife Foundation
  2. National Wildlife Federation
  3. The Nature Conservancy
  4. U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Do you know the answer to this LifeSmarts environment question? Vote on our Instagram story! Find out the answer in next week’s issue of Ho‘oha‘aheo.

HIDOE Headlines

A roundup of announcements, resources and shoutouts.

» New approaches to teacher recruitment are paying off and helping schools to address staff vacancies.

» Kalani High Special Education teacher Natanya Friedheim provides a first-hand perspective on the public-private school divide in Hawaiʻi in her essay What Public Schools Get Right About Inclusion.

» Pedestrian safety measures are being installed around Oʻahu to help students get to and from school safely.


Keith Hayashi


Heidi Armstrong

Deputy Superintendent

Curt Otaguro

Deputy Superintendent

Tammi Oyadomari-Chun
Deputy Superintendent


Sean Bacon
Talent Management
Brian Hallett
Fiscal Services
Annie Kalama
Student Support Services

Michael Otsuji

Information Technology Services
Randall Tanaka
Facilities and Operations

Cara Tanimura

Strategy, Innovation and Performance

Teri Ushijima

Curriculum and Instructional Design



Nanea Kalani

Executive Editor

Chanel Honda

Managing Editor

Sara Miyazono
Creative Director

Derek Inoshita

Contributing Writer

Krislyn Yano

Contributing Writer



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Email: newsletter@k12.hi.us

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Phone: (808) 784-6200

Email: doeinfo@k12.hi.us

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