In addition to listening and learning from the parents and staff that we meet in our programs, at PPS Hawaii we go one step further. We seek to engage parent and community members to join us in taking direct action to influence policy in schools and statewide.
These actions include:
• Giving testimony online and in person at hearings and public meetings
• Participation in groups such as HE’E, the Hui for Excellence in Education
• Participating in rallies, such as the upcoming HSTA rally on Monday, February 13 at 11am
• Meeting directly with decision makers to educate them on the concerns of families and students
• Sharing information about issues related to public education in person, on social media, and other avenues
The key education issues we are focusing on in 2017 include:
Increase Teacher Salary
– This is a high priority. Over 10,000 students do not have a qualified teacher in the classroom in Hawaii. This is a statewide crisis, and to solve it, we need to elevate the position of teachers in our society. We need to pay our teachers a competitive wage so it’s an attractive job for people to go into and stay in.
-We are wasting time and resources on toxic testing. It is harmful to teachers and students. Parents know it, the students know it, the community knows it, and the research shows it. We need to find a better way to assess our students and schools.
Whole Child Education
-A single-minded focus on testing has meant a loss in visual arts, music, and physical education, to the detriment of the physical, mental, and emotional health of our students.
Expand public preschool for four year olds
-We need to fully fund the Executive Office of Early Learning in order to continue to make progress in expanding public preschool options across the state.
-Air conditioning. Maintenance and repairs. Funding charter school facilities. This is basic stuff. It needs to happen.
Increased family and community engagement in schools
Hawaiian language and cultural education
Support for after school programs
Paid family leave