Board Of Education

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The Hawaii State Board of Education’s mission is to equip all public school students with the skills and knowledge required to lead them into lives of responsible citizenship.

The board develops statewide educational policy, adopts standards for student achievement, monitors school success, appoints the superintendent of education and oversees the public library system. It also develops curriculum, proposes the education budget and participates in collective bargaining between Hawaii and the teachers union.

Hawaii State Constitution Article 10 outlines the board’s powers. The board’s general business meetings are held twice a month and minutes from past meetings are posted online.

In recent years, the board has been trying to guide Hawaii’s public education system through federal requirements established by the 2001 No Child Left Behind Act. Since 2007, the school system’s progress has flagged under annual requirements that are becoming increasingly challenging.

History
The current board of education is appointed by the governor. But it wasn’t always that way.

Former Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle beginning in 2004 tried unsuccessfully to divide the statewide board into seven local school boards. In 2010, Lingle proposed to reform the educational system by eliminating the board and making the superintendent an appointed cabinet-level position. The Legislature rejected the idea, and then passed its own proposal for an appointed board of education. This appeared on ballots in the form of a constitutional amendment.

Voters on Nov. 2, 2010 passed the amendment by 57.4 percent to replace the elected board of education with one appointed by the governor. They also elected an outgoing Board of Education that held their seats until Gov. Neil Abercrombie’s board appointees were confirmed in April 2011.

Members
The governor appoints nine members on staggered terms to the Board of Education, subject to Senate approval. A 10th non-voting student representative is elected annually by the Hawaii State Student Council.

Board Powers
The Hawaii State Constitution of 1959 established a 14-member board of education to define policy for and oversee Hawaii’s newly founded statewide school district. The board now consists of nine voting members, one non-voting student representative and one non-voting military representative.

Hawaii State Constitution Article 10 outlines the board’s powers. The document originally stipulated that the board’s members would be appointed by the governor. In 1964, an amendment was passed that gave voters the responsibility for electing board of education members (the student member is elected by the Hawaii State Student Council). Hawaii’s first elected board of education took office in December 1966. Twice after that, voters rejected amendments that would have returned the state to an appointed board. When the amendment appeared on ballots for a third time in 2010, voters approved it by 57 percent.

Board Of Education
New Hawaii Schools Chief’s First Priority: Listening Cory Lum/Civil Beat

New Hawaii Schools Chief’s First Priority: Listening

Christina Kishimoto plans on visiting all the islands in her first six months to talk with educators and students.

New Hawaii Schools Chief Selected Courtney Teague/Civil Beat

New Hawaii Schools Chief Selected

Christina Kishimoto will take over as superintendent on August 1 after leaving her current  job as superintendent of an Arizona school district.

School Superintendent Selection Looms As 2 Finalists Speak Cory Lum/Civil Beat

School Superintendent Selection Looms As 2 Finalists Speak

The two candidates from the mainland both emphasized educational equity and prioritizing teacher input.

Search For New Schools’ Chief Continues To Raise Concerns Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Search For New Schools’ Chief Continues To Raise Concerns

Most people testifying at an education board meeting Tuesday questioned the process.

The Search For A New Hawaii Schools Chief Just Suffered A Major Setback Cory Lum/Civil Beat

The Search For A New Hawaii Schools Chief Just Suffered A Major Setback

The state has delayed the superintendent search amid worries that a former school board member might be getting favorable treatment.

Audit: Some DOE Employees Still Start Work Before Being Cleared Courtney Teague/Civil Beat

Audit: Some DOE Employees Still Start Work Before Being Cleared

A new report reveals that hiring practices for some employees have gotten worse, not better, in the past four years.

School Board Adopts Timeline In Search For Superintendent Civil Beat

School Board Adopts Timeline In Search For Superintendent

A new top administrator for Hawaii’s public schools should be selected by June, according to the plan.

Blueprint For Education Still Being Refined, School Board Told PF Bently/Civil Beat

Blueprint For Education Still Being Refined, School Board Told

The document being prepared by a governor’s task force is expected to complement the Department of Education’s own strategic plan.

Union Joins Effort To Let More People See School Board Meetings Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Union Joins Effort To Let More People See School Board Meetings

Volunteers have been recording the meetings and making them available online. Now they’ll have help.

Principals Push For A Louder Voice In Public Education Reform Efforts Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Principals Push For A Louder Voice In Public Education Reform Efforts

The state school board plans to discuss education reform Tuesday, but principals have held their own talks.

Hawaii Teacher: Why Teachers Won’t Miss Kathryn Matayoshi Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Hawaii Teacher: Why Teachers Won’t Miss Kathryn Matayoshi

A new superintendent needs to be much more proactive and transparent in supporting teachers.

Matayoshi To Be Replaced Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Matayoshi To Be Replaced

Kathryn Matayoshi is apparently on her way out as superintendent of Hawaii’s public school system. The state Board of Education…