Parents for Public Schools of Hawai‘i COVID School Statement
Parents for Public Schools of Hawai`i (PPS Hawai‘i) supports in-person learning where CDC standards can be achieved consistently. We support the option of hybrid and distance learning options for students, families and teachers when those solutions better meet health and learning needs. Students and families have been happy and relieved to get back to in-person learning for this school year. However, health concerns and difficulties implementing safe protocols raise questions about in-person learning for some students and teachers at some schools.
PPS Hawai`i knows that in-person learning is the most effective education for most students.
Thus, we support most students attending school in person IF these conditions are met:
1. Governor Ige’s call for vaccination or ongoing testing for all governmental employees, and
2. HI DOE COVID-19 Health and Safety Guidelines for 2021-22
Core Essential Strategies (for all situations across all schools)
- Promote vaccination of staff and eligible students
- Stay home if sick and go home if sick at school
- Correct and consistent masking
- Hand hygiene
Additional Mitigation Strategies (to be implemented by schools as completely as possible)
- ‘Ohana bubbles or cohorting
- Improving ventilation
- Physical distancing
- Screening testing
- Cleaning and disinfection
The COVID pandemic is an incredibly fluid and dynamic situation. Our government officials need to respond in accordance with the threat level that the virus poses to the public health risks on each island. Our Hawai`i Board and Department of Education must prioritize and champion public health in each school and classroom and provide needed alternatives. We must all work for safe, equitable, effective public education for all of Hawaii’s keiki and their families.
Covid Public School Hopes:
Given the continuing pandemic and reports of inconsistent health protocols, we urge the Hawaii DOE to:
- Provide safe conditions for students and teachers.
- Spend emergency funds ensuring compliance with safety protocols and contact tracing needs.
- Deliver in-person, hybrid, and fully distance learning options to Hawai`i families.
- Negotiate work agreements with teachers to reflect current needs.
- Plan for any eventuality: develop effective integrated systems for teaching and learning, communications, and district operations.
About Parents for Public Schools of Hawai‘i Parents for Public Schools Hawaii is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization of over 1,000 members statewide, comprising parents, educators, community leaders and other stakeholders in Hawai`i public education. We work collaboratively to improve and support public education in Hawai`i by increasing family and community engagement through programs, events, and other activities. We also advocate for policies that increase educational opportunities and support positive outcomes for parents, families, and children. PPS Hawai‘i is a member of the HE‘E coalition, Hawaii Children’s Action Network, and the Broadband Hui. Through our partners and directly, we represent family views and needs. PPS Hawai‘i is a member of the national organization, Parents for Public Schools Inc., which has established 17 chapters in 12 states. For more information, contact email@example.com.