Ho‘oha‘aheo Newsletter, Dec. 6


Our weekly online publication to highlight bright spots from across the public school system. This week's issue includes our partnership with PBS Hawai‘i and HIKI NŌ.

Dec. 6

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: Our email platform for distributing the newsletter will be changing. No action is needed for current subscribers, but please note that in the near future the newsletter will be sent from hawaiipublicschools@eblasts.k12.hi.us.

Aloha, HIDOE Community –

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

Investing in digital literacy with PBS Hawai‘i and HIKI NŌ

The Department is excited to embark on a new partnership with PBS Hawaiʻi and HIKI NŌ. We've entered into a formal agreement as a pledge to enrich the intellectual landscape of public schools through the deliberate fusion of digital media and the Hawaiian art of storytelling.

The HIKI NŌ program on PBS Hawaiʻi is the first and only weekly student news show with a statewide network of schools, engaging over 90 public, private and charter schools. Under the mentorship of teachers and industry volunteers, students weave narratives broadcast not just to Hawaiʻi, but to a global audience. Through this program, students have access to state-of-the-art resources, hands-on learning, and a national stage for their stories.

The training and experience through HIKI NŌ has helped many of our students successfully compete at the annual Student Television Network (STN) National Convention, which aims to support, promote and recognize excellence in scholastic broadcast journalism, filmmaking and multimedia. In March, 11 HIDOE schools won a record 45 awards at the STN competition in Long Beach!

Formalizing this partnership with PBS Hawaiʻi and HIKI NŌ solidifies the Department's commitment to invest in our students’ digital literacy, including digital storytelling.

This ongoing collaboration will include, for example, dynamic teacher and student training workshops in digital media skills, seasonal challenges to catalyze competitive excellence among teacher and student teams, and virtual workshops to extend the geographical reach of our educational initiatives.

The latest episode of HIKI NŌ features a special collection of Maui students from Baldwin High and Kīhei Elementary sharing what makes Maui unique. See here for an upcoming training opportunity and stay tuned for more!


Social media highlights of the most engaging posts of the week. Use the #HIPublicSchoolsProud hashtag for a chance to be featured!

Kealakehe Intermediate

» These are some highlights from Maui Monday! This was put together by Kumu Gaspar and Leadership class. We wore pink and dedicated the start of our Makahiki games to Maui. This event was also made for students at our school to feel more connected with the culture of the island.

Wahiawā Elementary

» Today we welcomed Deputy Superintendent Armstrong and the state literacy team to take a look at the great things happening at Wahiawā Elementary!

Kamali‘i Elementary

» HIDOE Superintendent Hayashi visited our campus yesterday morning. He visited classrooms during PBL Wednesday. Students in our A7 2nd grade class showed him the research they were doing for their unit. We loved sharing our learning environment.

West Maui Updates

We will be providing relevant information on Lāhainā schools in this space,
including updates on health and safety, construction and more.

Wipe tests

The Department has hired a contractor to conduct bi-weekly wipe sampling in Lāhainā classrooms to test for any particles settling on surfaces. The last wipe test on Nov. 20 found no lead or arsenic, similar to the previous two samplings. Stay tuned for results from the next round of samples.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers update

The first four modular buildings for the King Kamehameha III Elementary School temporary site arrived on Maui last Thursday. More units are expected to arrive from O‘ahu, California and Washington. Construction updates will be posted on the USACE Facebook page as it becomes available.

Island Art Galleries auction for Lāhainā

The “Aloha for Lahaina” art auction featuring pieces from Lāhaināluna students, a Lāhaināluna teacher and other local professional artists raised $14,000 for the four Lāhainā schools.

The auction was a joint effort between the Hawai‘i State Department of Education, the Public Schools of Hawai‘i Foundation, Island Art Galleries and Maui Hands Gallery. Mahalo to everyone who supported the fundraiser!

Important Dates and
Upcoming Events

Community Query

We asked on Instagram

Do you prefer live or artificial Christmas trees?

HIDOE Headlines

A roundup of announcements, resources and shoutouts.

» The Trojan Trading Post, a student-led pop-up store featuring products created by Career & Technical Education students at Mililani High is open Fridays and Saturdays until Dec. 16 at the Town Center of Mililani. The store is part of a work-based learning project for the students interested in business.

» Waipahu High celebrated the opening of its Integrated Academy Learning Center — a first in the state, creating a dedicated facility with industry-grade equipment and learning spaces for students in the school’s career academy pathways.

» Castle High held its inaugural Career Exposure Fair for students to better engage with prospective employers from 40 local businesses and industries “speed-dating” style.


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

Kimberly Yuen

Contributing Writer



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