|Karen Street||State Public Charter School Commission (“Commission”)||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Support|
|Jim Shon||Hawaiʻi Educational Policy Center||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour, VII A. Designation of Charter School PIG, B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|Glenn Hori||Public||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Support|
|Marcia Linville||Public||IV. A. Retention of Employees||Comment|
|Justin Hughey||HSTA||IV. A. Retention of Employees||Comment|
|Kalehua Krug||Commission||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour||Comment|
|John Thatcher||Connections Public Charter School||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour||Comment|
|Roger Takabayashi||Commission||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Support|
|Kaʻanoʻi Walk||Kamehameha Schools||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG , B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|Gene Zarro||Kihei Charter School||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG , B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|Steve Hirakami||Hawaii Academy of Arts and Sciences Public Charter School||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG , B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|Monica Morris||Office of Hawaiian Affairs||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG, B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|Taffi Wise||Kanu o ka ʻAina||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG , B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers, D. 2016 Legislative Agenda and Process||Support|
|Kaʻiulani Pahiʻō||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Uʻilani Hayes||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Uʻilani Morante||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Keahi Kanahele||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Haunani Moody||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Kamaiama Lehano||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Malia Sylva-Meeken||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Lily Carrero||Na Lei Naʻauao||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG||Comment|
|Jeannine Souki||Hawaii Public Charter School Network||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG and B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|C. Kanoelani Nāone||Inpeace||VII.B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|Jim Shon||Hawaiʻi Educational Policy Center||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour, VII A. Designation of Charter School PIG and B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Comment|
|Catherine H. Payne||State Public Charter School Commission, Chair||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour||Comment|
|Karen Street||State Public Charter School Commission, Vice Chair||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour||Comment|
|Tom Hutton||State Public Charter School Commission, Executive Director||IV.D. Charter School Listening Tour, VII.A. Designation of Charter School PIG, VII.B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers,||Comment|
|Steve Hirakami||Hawaii Academy of Arts and Science Public Charter School, Director||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour||Comment|
|Kalima Cayir||Volcano School of Arts & Sciences, PCS, Interim Education Director||IV. D. Charter School Listening Tour||Comment|
|Kamanaʻopono Crabbe||Office of Hawaiian Affairs, Chief Executive Officer||VII.A. Designation of Charter School PIG; VII.B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers,||Support|
|Kaʻanoʻi Walk||Kamehameha Schools, Senior Policy Analyst of the Community Education Division||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG , B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
|Jeannine Souki||Hawaii Public Charter School Network||VII. A. Designation of Charter School PIG and B. Multiple Charter School Authorizers||Support|
Board Member Donald Horner thanked Street for her service and clarified that the Commission was not heard at the Listening Tour. He gathered from the report that there was a disconnect between what the Commission staff and Commission were doing.
Street responded that the Commission and Commission staff are the same entity. Decisions are made by the Commission and guidance is provided to Commission staff. The Commission its staff do not always agree.
Board Member Hubert Minn agreed that perception was important and held the Commission and staff responsible for issues.
Jim Shon, Hawaiʻi Educational Policy Center, stated that a charter school’s governing board is an independent organization that determines school management, curriculum, and other details. The State Public Charter School Contract (“Charter Contract”), however, has many previsions that require approval schools to get Commission approval for things that are within the school governing board jurisdiction. Shon expressed his opinion that this violates rights of the governing Board. Shon stated that holding schools accountable has turned into the Commission and staff making decisions for the schools. Shon asked that the Board be serious about some of the innovations and risks that charter schools are taking and would like to see charters as a regular Board agenda item. Shon stated that he had looked at various sources to find out that a disproportionate amount of federal funding goes to charter schools (only 1.8%).
Board Member Horner stated that he was under the impression that charter schools received the same percentage of federal funds as Department of Education (“Department”) schools.
Glenn Hori, a member of the public, conveyed that the report showed many barriers for charter schools, and partnerships were being affected. Hori stated that there were transparency and communications issues, and that proactive vs. reactive words needed to be communicated. Hori added that charter schools feel as though they are being retaliated against and that all parties need to work as a team to achieve a common goal.
Marcia Linville, Democratic Party of Hawaii, spoke on the retention of employees, the low salaries of teachers and librarians and that these professions are treated poorly. Linville stated that the Department should be providing the means for children to read.
Justin Hughey, Hawaii State Teachers Association, Vice President, also spoke on teacher recruitment and retention. He shared his personal experience with teacher salary, working a second job and the high cost of living in Hawaii. Hughey stated that offering competitive salaries would help to fill positions and provide teachers with respect.
Kalehua Krug, Commission, Commissioner, congratulated the Board for elevating charter school issues to the current level. He asked how the Board and Commission collectively advocate to the Legislature. Krug added that he was glad Board Members spent time visiting schools to listen. He hoped that issues could be addressed as a group with transparency from the Commission and Board. Krug expressed that he would have loved to be a part of the Listening Tour and that the public generally has a negative view of the charter school system and that he would like to focus on the positive.
John Thatcher, Principal of Connections Public Charter School, thanked the Board for conducting the listening tour and stated that issues of importance were brought to light. He testified that federal impact aid has been a constant issue and that he had raised the issue 2015-16 federal Impact Aid has not been distributed to schools at a previous Commission meeting. Thatcher stated that it was very hard to look at financial deficits in charter schools, knowing that not all of the funds have been distributed to the schools. The charters used to get federal Impact Aid money early in the year, but over the past couple of years it has turned into a political issue.
Roger Takabayashi, Commission, Commissioner, echoed Street’s statements. Takabayashi stated that the Commission was diversified with two educators (Catherine Payne and Roger Takabayashi), two Hawaiian representatives (Kalehua Krug, Peter Hanohano), two individuals from charter schools themselves (West Hawaii Explorations Academy and Kona Pacific). The Commission does not always agree with its staff’s recommendations, but they have a lot of compassion for the students.
Board Member Horner referred to the allegations of retaliation in the charter school listening tour report and asked Takabayashi for his thoughts. Takabayashi replied that he did not feel there was retaliation and that the Commission’s purpose is to follow the law, open new schools, and close them if they are ineffective. Takabayashi added that they are only interested in seeing the schools succeed, and did not object to a Board review of the Commission.
Kaʻanoʻi Walk, Kamehameha Schools, Senior Policy Analyst, supported appointment of a charter school permitted interaction group and applauded the listening tour as a progressive way to connects Board with the community. Walk also expressed support for the development of multiple authorizers for charter schools. Kamehameha Schools has supported Hawaiian focus charter schools for over a decade because they enhance academic achievement and engagement for students. Walk stated that continuing to engage in dialog will help to move forward in an effective way.
Board Chairperson Mizumoto recognized Board member Jim Williams for leading the listening tour.
Board Member Patricia Halagao left the room at 2:14 p.m.
Gene Zarro, Kihei Charter School, expressed his support for the charter school permitted interaction group and administrative rules for multiple charter school authorizers. Zarro stated that it was important the Board have oversight on these activities. Zarro stated that the Listening Tour allowed schools to speak their minds and was helpful and suggested that the Board may find incidents of retaliation while conducting their investigation.
Board Member Horner asked Wise what she was asking the Board to do. While the Board has oversight over the Commission, many concerns raised seem to do with legal interpretation. Wise clarified that the Commission and charter schools both have a lot of passion, but they seem to be going in two directions. The Commission is creating a “cookie-cutter” box of compliance that charter schools do not fit into. Wise also stated that there is a disconnect between the schools and their communities and the commissioners. Charter schools are looking at innovation, community control, and autonomy and want the Board to clarify whether this is the purpose of charter schools or if things have changed.
Board Member Horner stated that the Board needs to stay within the boundaries of the law and that if another authorizer comes in to Hawaii, it will need to bring its own resources so that it does not take money from the schools. Wise stated that the Commission’s staff is one of the largest in the nation.
Kaʻiulani Pahiʻō, Na Lei Naʻauao, Coordinator, stated that charter schools in Hawaii want to have an accountability process and help the Board and the Commission with this process. The adults need to show the children that they can play nicely together in the sandbox. She invited the Board members to visit the schools and see what the students have been doing. She then stated that a group of students that represent a statewide leadership program for Hawaii focused charter schools was here.
A student government board representing nine Hawaiian focus charter schools described their statewide leadership program and introduced themselves: Uʻilani Hayes, Uʻilani Morante, Keahi Kanahele, Haunani Moody, Kamaiama Lehano, Malia Sylva-Meeken, and Lily Carrero. They provided information on charter schools, how they teach students, what makes them different, how they create leaders and teach core values, and they thanked the Board for its work and expressed their desire that the Board make decisions that are appropriate for charter schools and all public schools.
Board Member Minn thanked the students, said that he was reassured hearing from them, and that he wanted the Board to be more transparent.
Jeannine Souki, Hawaii Public Charter School Network, Executive Director, expressed her support for agenda items VII.A (designation of charter school permitted interaction group) and B (administrative rules for multiple charter school authorizers). She stated that the Board should move forward on these items because there was an adequate amount of concern. Multiple authorizers was a best practice that was raised during the development of charter school law.
Human Resources Committee Chairperson Brian De Lima reported that the Committee heard from the Department regarding strategic plan objectives and priorities. The Committee received an update on Department Directed Leave and Leave Pending Investigation which showed progress in the investigation and decision making processes. The Committee also received an update on special education bonuses and staffing allocations.
B. Finance and Infrastructure Committee Report on: (1) Update on the Department of Education’s heat abatement program: progress since November 17, 2015; (2) Update on the Department of Education’s supplemental operating budget and capital improvement program request for Fiscal Year 2016-2017: Executive Branch decisions; (3) Update on status of, process, and timeline for Committee review of Board policies presently assigned to the Committee
Finance and Infrastructure Chairperson Grant Chun reported that the Committee received an update on heat abatement, where there is great progress and received an update on the Executive Branch’s decisions regarding supplemental operating budget decisions.
C. Superintendent’s Report: January 2016 Education Update and Department of Education (“Department”) briefing of the Hawaii State Legislature’s House Committee on Finance and Senate Committee on Ways and Means
Kathryn Matayoshi, Superintendent, began by stating that the material for the supplemental budget briefing was available on the Department of Education website. Matayoshi thanked Board Members Jim Williams and Patricia Halagao for attending the hearing.
Board Member Williams left at 2:57 p.m.
Matayoshi stated that 57% of the student population is in one or more of the high need subgroups and the number of economically disadvantaged students is up by 34%. Matayoshi highlighted that for the first time, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Report showed Hawaii as a leader for sustained achievement.
Board Member Williams returned at 2:59 p.m.
Although resources have remained flat, Hawaii is a place of collaboration and the Department has been working on improving relationships. The Department’s vision for Hawaii’s students, is that they are lifelong learners that contribute positively to the community.
D. Report on the Chart School Listening Tour
Board Member Jim Williams described the purpose of the listening tour, which was to hear from charter school administrators, administrative staff, and governing board members about their relationship with the Commission and its staff, their views on how the Commission is performing its duties, suggestions about how the board should fulfill its oversight and evaluation duties and any other issues charter schools are facing. He expressed gratitude for Board Vice Chairperson De Lima and Board Members Minn, and Margaret Cox for attending meetings, and for the University Laboratory School, Ka ʻUmeke Kāʻeo Public Charter School, and Kawaikini New Century Public Charter School for hosting listening tour session.
Board Member Williams stated that over the past two years there had been concern about whether the Board was fulfilling their charter school oversight duties, and decided that listening to the schools was necessary to determine whether the concerns were widespread and not a few dissatisfied individuals. The tour was conducted informally with no action from the Board, and not on behalf of the Board. Board Member Williams explained that the report was a reflection of what the Board heard from schools. There was no representation that everything in the report is factually correct, but it was the reality of the people attending the sessions. There was consistent concern with communication and staff capacity, the Commission fulfilling reporting requirements, legal representation, oversight from the Board, and federal funds. Additionally, there was a widespread support for multiple authorizers. No one said that Commission staff was not making an effort. His conclusion after the listening tour was that the concerns were broad and deep enough to warrant a recommendation that the Board form a permitted interaction group.
Board Member Williams asked Board Members to bring their attention to a paragraph from statute providing the Board’s duties as relating to charter schools. Board Member Williams explained that the law did not state that the Commission should be evaluated periodically; there had to be a trigger. Board Member Williams recommended that the Board form an investigative committee with Board Member Williams (chair) and Board Vice Chairperson De Lima and Board Members Amy Asselbaye and Hubert Minn to an investigative committee.
Board Chairperson Mizumoto confirmed that the aforementioned Board Members were all interested in serving on the committee.
ACTION: Moved to designate Board Members Jim Williams (chair of committee), Brian DeLima, Hubert Minn, and Amy Asselbaye to an investigative committee to 1) determine if a special review of the State Public Charter School Commission is warranted and, if so, develop the process and procedures for such a review that apply nationally recognized principles and standards for quality charter authorizing, pursuant to Hawaii Revised Statutes Section 302D-11(c); and 2) review the legislative proposals, as attached in Board Member Jim Williams’ memorandum dated January 19, 2016, and develop a recommendation to the Board of whether to formally support them through written testimony to the Legislature.” (Williams/Cox). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.
B. Board Action on development of administrative rules for multiple charter school authorizers
Board Member Williams stated that there had been discussion about Board responsibilities for charter schools and establishing administrative rules for multiple authorizers at the December 1, 2015 student Achievement Committee Meeting, but no action was taken. Board Member Williams stated that the responsibility was mandated to the Board by law, and requested a motion so that there is a directive to Board staff to provide a draft to the Student Achievement Committee in February.
Board Chairperson asked Alison Kunishige, Board of Education Executive Director whether draft administrative rules could be prepared and presented at the February 2, 2016 Student Achievement Committee meeting. Kunishige stated that that draft administrative rules would be ready for the meeting.
ACTION: Motion to direct Board staff to develop administrative rules for multiple charter school authorizers (Williams/Cox). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.
C. Board Action on Board general business meeting schedule for 2016 calendar year and discussion concerning community meetings
Board Chairperson Mizumoto presented the general business meeting schedule and community meetings for 2016.
Board Member Williams offered to organize an Oahu community meeting with a partner.
Board Chairperson Mizumoto stated that he would serve as a proxy for the Oahu meeting.
ACTION: Motion to approve the Board general business meeting schedule for 2016 calendar year as shown in the submittal dated January 19, 2016 (De Lima/Horner). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.
D. Board Action on 2016 legislative agenda and process
Board Chairperson Mizumoto asked about the Board’s approach in prior legislative sessions. Board Member Horner stated that he usually took the lead. The Chair should be the lead, but not the only, spokesperson. If the Board has a position that it has voted on, even if it has not reviewed the legislation, then it can take a position on legislation. In areas where the Board has not discussed or given direction, the Board chairperson may provide comments, but it did not come collectively from the Board. Because there are two meetings every month, legislation can be placed on the agenda for review and discussion by the Board. Board Member Horner stated that testifying was time consuming and difficult, but the Legislature wants to see the Board represented in testimony. Usually the Superintendent testified on behalf of the Department and the Board was there for moral support.
Board Chairperson Mizumoto stated that there were no bills before the Board for consideration at this time, but there needed to be a mechanism for discussion and Board Member input before the Board takes a position.
Board Vice Chairperson De Lima stated that it would be helpful if the Board executive director worked with the Department to highlight bills that are proposed, moving, and key where Board action is advisable so that the bills can be placed on the Board’s agenda.
Board Chairperson Lance Mizumoto asked that the Board executive director craft an approach for the Board to consider at its next Board meeting.
E. Board Action on proposed legislation to amend the statutory salary cap for the state librarian, as provided for in Section 312-2.1, Hawaii Revised Statutes
Board Chairperson Mizumoto stated that the Governor provided guidance to tie the State Librarian’s salary to the salary of another position. A revised draft of the proposed legislation showing a tie to the Superintendent’s salary was attached to the submittal.
ACTION: Motion to approve the proposed legislation to amend the statutory salary cap for the state librarian, as provided for in Section 312-2.1, Hawaii Revised Statutes, as shown in the submittal dated January 19, 2016 (De Lima/Minn). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.
F. Board Action on plan and timeline for update of the 2011-2018 Joint Department of Education and Board of Education Strategic Plan
Stephen Schatz, Deputy Superintendent and Tammi Chun, Assistant Superintendent, Office of Strategy, Innovation and Performance, reported that the Department and Board’s Strategic Plan (“Strategic Plan”) has been in the implementation stage for about three and half years. During this time new Board policies have been adopted and there are new federal requirements (Every Student Succeeds Act (“ESSA”)) that should be incorporated into the Strategic Plan. The first step is to listen. The Department plans on listening to students and community stakeholders (using Board community meetings as listening opportunities). Second, is to refine; keep the basic framework, but prioritize objectives. The third step is to focus – set out priorities, but be clear that schools are empowered to supplement statewide priorities. Chun presented the proposed timeline, which supported ESSA requirements. Chun highlighted the Board’s role, which included individual interviews during the listening phase, community meetings, regular Department updates to the Board for decision making, a general business meeting focused exclusively on the Strategic Plan, and a full Board meeting with the Governor.
Board Member Minn appreciated the Strategic Plan set up but hoped to see more input from the field.
Board Member Williams stated that he expected to see a final approval by December 31, 2016. Board Member Williams asked Chun how many Department staff were dedicated to work on this project. Chun responded that herself plus two others, but that this was not their only assignments. If her office was not given the task, it would be the responsibility of the Superintendent.
Matayoshi added that there has been discussion with community partners about the possibility of establishing focus groups and the Department has considered hiring an outside entity to assist.
Board Vice Chairperson De Lima stated that there needs to be more engagement to support understanding and that special education needed to have more focus. Board Member De Lima stated that the Strategic Plan effort was important, but should not take away from the special education action plan. Board Member De Lima expressed his concern about diluting resources.
Board Member Cox appreciated the presentation and added that special education had potential to be a big part of the project.
Military Liaison Colonel Peter Santa Ana stated that from a military standpoint, he saw a lot of strategic planning. Colonel Santa Ana stated that a strategy plan must be based off of revenue and that the planning timeframe appeared a little bit rushed. Colonel Santa Ana stated that there was a lot of input but little resources, creating issues.
Chun responded that the timeline was intended to have enough of the Strategic Plan completed by 2016, early Fall to inform Department biennium budget planning.
Board Member Chun was concerned about neighbor island input and did not consider Board community meetings as an adequate resource for garnering neighbor island input regarding the Strategic Plan.
Board Member Horner agreed and suggested a list of stakeholders that should be included in a systematic way. Chun stated that the Department will report to the Board in February to discuss the plan in more detail.
Board Chairperson Mizumoto asked Chun what methods had worked in the past to improve on shortfalls and create discussion to move forward. Board Vice Chairperson De Lima appreciated the opportunity to highlight the value of public education and the areas that need improvement.
Action: Motion to approve the plan and timeline for update of the 2011-2018 Joint Department of Education and Board of Education Strategic Plan, including a presentation to the Board not later than the December 6, 2016 Board meeting (Williams/Horner). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.
Board Vice Chairperson De Lima left the room at 3:58 p.m.