Welcome back to another new year! I look forward to a rewarding and promising year, working together with you to raise student achievement and build friendships and futures for staff, students, and families.
I am from the state of Hawaii, retired from the Department of Education with 39.5 years in teaching and administration. My last position was in the Leeward District Office as Acting Complex Superintendent. I spent ten years turning around James Campbell High School, the largest high school in the state, from one of the lowest performing schools in the state to one in the top ten and meeting Adequate Yearly Progress, AYP, with the second most special education and English as a Second Language population, high poverty, crime, and diverse ethnicities. The students’ scholarships were the most in the state at $15 million of last year’s graduating class of 600, the most Advanced Placement courses, test takers, and growth; the first and only school with the International Baccalaureate Program. The school had met national recognition in many areas: Robotics, AVID National Demonstration Site, Gates Foundation Pathways to College Access, National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP) Breakthrough High School, to name a few.
I am fortunate to be at E.J. King High School. Because of the teachers’ and staff’s past efforts, majority of the students are achieving in the 70th percentile and are at or above the national level in reading and math. I will continue to support the goals that have been identified in the School Improvement Action Plan:
Increase in performance in Problem-Solving Skills and Increase in performance on targeted Literacy skills, using instructional interventions in all curricular areas. Both goals will be measured by the TerraNova Multiple Assessments, 3rd edition in math, science, reading and language arts subtests and other assessments.
I am looking forward to a great year and many more years working together with you to accomplish our goals. Commendations to our JNROTC for earning a Distinguished Unit status, teachers for their help with our AP Language and Composition students score well on the AP exam, and counselors, teachers, and administrators for assisting students with their college admissions. We were able to send three seniors to military academies last year. Rest assured that your child is attending a very good school. Our goal is to make it better. Being good is not good enough. I look to you for your guidance and support in taking E.J. King to a higher level.
With warm regards,
Gail Awakuni, Ph.D.