Queen Liliuokalani Building
1390 Miller Street, Room 404
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813
Thursday, December 6, 2018

Catherine Payne, Chairperson
Brian De Lima, Esq., Vice Chairperson
Patricia Bergin
Margaret Cox
Nolan Kawano
Kili Namau‘u
Dwight Takeno
Kenneth Uemura
Bruce Voss, Esq.
Colonel Neil Mahabir (military representative)
David Texeira (student representative)


Phyllis Unebasami, Deputy Superintendent
John Kim, Chairperson, State Public Charter School Commission
Alison Kunishige, Executive Director
Kenyon Tam, Board Analyst
Regina Pascua, Board Private Secretary
Irina Dana, Secretary

I. Call to Order

The Board of Education (“Board”) General Business Meeting was called to order by Board Chairperson Catherine Payne at 1:35 p.m.

II. *Public Testimony on Board of Education (“Board”) Agenda Items

Board Chairperson Payne called for public testimony. The following people provided oral testimony.

Agenda Item
Monica MorrisOffice of Hawaiian AffairsVII.B., Board Action on 2018 Legislative Report: annual Board report on the State’s public charter schools in accordance with Hawaiian Revised Statutes Section 302D-21Support/Comment

Monica Morris, Office of Hawaiian Affairs (“OHA”), testified on the Board’s annual report to the Legislature regarding the State’s public charter schools. Morris highlighted that she agrees with and supports two areas of the report, including the identification of the lack of facilities funding and the importance of a multiple charter school authorizer system.
Morris agreed with the Board’s recommendations, emphasized the importance of addressing these areas, and detailed disparities between charter schools and Department of Education (“Department”) schools. She stated that OHA would be happy to assist if there is anything that OHA could help with in order to expedite the multiple charter school authorizer timeline.

Board Chairperson Payne noted that the State Public Charter School Commission (“Commission”) created a charter school facilities funding working group and the working group’s final report is due next month. Morris asked if the Board would correct its annual report to reflect Board Chairperson Payne’s clarification. Board Chairperson Payne explained that the Board’s current report includes that the working group is scheduled to meet in January 2019 to finalize recommended criteria.

III. Approval of Meeting Minutes of November 15, 2018

ACTION: Motion to approve the General Business Meeting minutes and the General Business Meeting executive session minutes of November 15, 2018 (De Lima/Uemura). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.

IV. Reports of Board Committees, Board Members, and Superintendent

Board Chairperson Payne reported that at its Special Meeting, the Board received a presentation on the iTEaCH Conference. She stated that the Office of Curriculum and Instructional Design is sponsoring the conference and detailed that the Department is holding its conference in June at the Hawaii Convention Center. Board Chairperson Payne detailed that the conference provides teachers with an interactive opportunity to learn about technology and how to implement it in their classrooms. She stated that Board Members are encouraged to attend.

Board Chairperson Payne stated that the Board also participated in an hour of code activity and highlighted that students from Momilani Elementary, Hawaii Technology Academy, Ilima Intermediate, and Waipahu High School taught Board Members how they are using their coding experience to design and create. She highlighted that Board Members were inspired by students’ experience, engagement, and confidence.

Student Achievement Committee Chairperson Cox reported that the committee received a presentation on special education and English learners (“EL”) in the Baldwin-Kekaulike-Maui Complex Area. She detailed that this presentation is part of a series of presentations regarding what is happening in complex areas in the areas of EL and special education. Committee Chairperson Cox highlighted that the committee learned that Baldwin High School rearranged its master schedule in order to address the needs of students receiving special education services. She reported that the committee also discussed a new timeline for the multiple charter school authorizer system and highlighted that members of the public testified and offered their support to Board staff.

Student Representative David Texeira reported that on October 12, 2018 the Hawaii State Student Council (“HSSC”) participated in the 25th Annual Hawaii Children Youth Summit and served as facilitators and discussion leaders. HSSC is currently discussing three topics it learned about from the event: suicide awareness, mental health, and sustainability within schools.

Student Representative Texeira reviewed updates from HSSC’s October meeting. He detailed that Christina Kishimoto, Superintendent, attended the meeting and presented on the iTEaCH Conference, including the possibility of a student panel, and a presenter attended to discuss the ‘Aina Pono program and how students can implement this program in their own schools. Student Representative Texeira highlighted that HSSC members are planning to discuss the ‘Aina Pono program with their respective schools and principals. HSSC members also received a presentation regarding the Department’s mobile bullying app and provided the presentation team with feedback and potential improvements. He stated that HSSC shared concerns regarding use of the app, including fake complaints and improper use. Student Representative Texeira highlighted that the Department assured HSSC that it is putting time and energy into creating an app that would lend to an environment that was safe from bullying.

Student Representative Texeira reviewed HSSC events. He stated that last Friday, HSSC members received a presentation regarding the importance of gratitude and appreciation and how gratitude and appreciation could create unity in schools. HSSC also attended a design conference in November where members were exposed to the process of design thinking. He highlighted that HSSC will hold its upcoming Hawaii State Secondary Student Conference in the near future and detailed that the theme will be “Together towards Tomorrow.” Student Representative Texeira stated that the idea behind the theme is that in order for students to build a future for themselves, they need to work together. He highlighted that HSSC is expecting 200 participants from across the state, including students and advisors, and further highlighted that participants will participate in debates, discussions, and walkthroughs of the Hawaii State Capitol.

Phyllis Unebasami, Deputy Superintendent, reported that Kishimoto visited Kaimuki High School and highlighted that Kaimuki High School is engaged in discussions regarding project-based learning and school design. Kishimoto also visited Pauoa Elementary School to celebrate the school’s designation as a 2018 National Blue Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education. Unebasami highlighted that legislators, business leaders, parents, and community members attended to celebrate the school’s sustained work in reading, math, and science. Unebasami stated that Kishimoto met with 20 students from Nanakuli High and Intermediate to conduct a focus group regarding their aspirations around school design and to learn about what would engage students there.

Unebasami stated that the Department had its HawaiiPay kickoff on Monday and needs to move over 22,000 employees to its new pay system. She detailed that 48% of employees already enrolled in HawaiiPay and highlighted that schools are conducting drives to help employees enroll.

Unebasami detailed that the Department started to work on convening a gender equity committee. It designated 14 members to serve on the committee and represent various groups, including Complex Area Superintendents, administrators, athletic directors, an individual from the Office of School Facilities and Support Services, the Office of Talent Management, the Civil Rights Compliance Office, the Office of Curriculum and Instruction, the State’s athletic director, and community members. The goal of the committee is to achieve equitable athletic opportunities by analyzing data provided by each school, reviewing action plans, sharing information and suggestions for supporting equity, and providing guidance toward the identification of priorities and goals. Unebasami noted that female athletes might require special attention due to historical gender biases.
Unebasami stated that the committee would convene after the winter break and would meet annually.

Unebasami highlighted the Department’s iTEaCH conference and stated that the idea behind the conference is that it is designed for teachers by teachers. Unebasami confirmed that the Department would hold the conference on June 13, 2019 at the Hawaii Convention Center. She stated that the Department is planning for successful ways that teachers will support each other in their professional development.

V. Discussion Items
John Kim, Commission Chairperson, reviewed the Commission’s annual report and highlight the Commission’s progress in working more closely with charter schools. He stated that the charter contracts of all charter schools include a performance framework, which the Commission uses to evaluate performance in three areas, including academic, financial, and organizational. Kim detailed that in addition to using traditional measures to evaluate schools, such as stratified data and test scores, the Commission has been working with schools to create value-added measures. He highlighted that value-added measures focus on the unique aspects of a school’s model that test scores might not capture, such as cultural components or community development. He stated that the Commission works with schools to define measures and set measurable targets to quantify success in those areas. Kim stated that in order to evaluate the academic performance of charter schools, the Commission reviews student academic outcomes and progress schools have made to achieve measures. He detailed that the Commission’s annual report includes value-added measures for each charter school. Kim highlighted that value-added measures are an attempt to capture and quantify the value of charter schools because charter schools are unique and provide a benefit to the community.

Kim stated that the Commission incorporated a risk-based assessment to measure financial performance for charter schools. Using this method of assessment, the Commission is better able to assess the potential risk of fiscal insolvency for each school using a balanced weighted formula that incorporated six fiscal measures. He stated that the risk assessment provides the Commission with a way to review financial issues, identify problems, and help schools work through problems.

Kim stated that schools received a new charter contract beginning July 2017. With this contract, the Commission adopted a new organizational performance framework. The new framework requires that each school complete an assurance of compliance statement on an annual basis. This document provides assurances to the Commission that a school complies with specified laws, rules, regulations, policies, and charter contract provisions. He detailed that a school’s board chair and school leader annually review and sign this document.

Kim stated that the Commission is working to implement its strategic plan, set milestones, and evaluate targets. He stated that this has been an ongoing process. He detailed that the Commission engaged in discussions with schools and communities and further detailed that an outside agency assisted the Commission in organizing ten strategic targets in its strategic plan.

VI. *Public Testimony on Board Agenda Items

Board Chairperson Payne called for public testimony. There was no public testimony at this time.

VII. Action Items
Kim stated that on February 21, 2017, the Board conducted a special review of the Commission and issued a report. The report required the Commission to provide corrective action plans to address any deficiencies and for the Commission to report quarterly and in the Commission’s annual report on the corrective actions taken to address any deficiencies until the Board determines sufficient progress. He stated that the Commission has been providing quarterly reports to the Board and believes that it has made sufficient progress on all deficiencies. He noted that the Commission alluded to its strategic plan, which addresses many of the Board’s earlier concerns. He stated that the Commission requests that it should no longer be required to report on its corrective actions because it has working plans in place to address issues that the Board previously raised.

Board Member Bruce Voss asked if the Commission found value in its strategic planning process. Kim stated that Commissioners were involved in most meetings between consultants and staff and were present for discussions regarding milestones. He stated that he attended three sessions and gained a better understanding of issues. Kim highlighted that the value for him was significant. He detailed the amount of work involved in the development and implementation of the Commission’s strategic plan and emphasized the importance of a focus on mission and the development of programs and techniques aligned with mission. Kim stated that it was a rewarding process.

ACTION: Motion to grant the State Public Charter School Commission’s request to cease quarterly reports on corrective actions taken to address deficiencies noted in the Board’s special review report issued on February 21, 2017 because sufficient progress has been made, as detailed in the Commission’s memorandum dated December 6, 2018 (De Lima/Cox). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.

Board Chairperson Payne reviewed the Board’s report on the State’s public charter schools and stated that the Board must provide the Governor, Legislature, and the public with an annual report on the State’s public charter schools. Board Chairperson Payne detailed that the report includes the Board’s assessment of successes, challenges, and areas for improvement in the charter school system; a line-item of breakdown of all federal funds received by the Department and distributed to authorizers; concerns regarding equity and recommendations to improve access to and distribution of federal funds to public charter schools; a summary of the criteria used by the charter school facilities funding working group; a detailed breakdown of the allocation of funding through general funds and bond funds; a detailed list of the projects funded by general funds and bond funds; the status of funding for projects previously awarded; and a discussion of all Board policies adopted in the previous year.

Board Chairperson Payne stated that the Commission has adequately addressed deficiencies from the Board’s special review, and the Board believes that the Commission is implementing a strong accountability system. The Board is also encouraged by the steps the Commission has taken to improve communication and relationships with the charter schools. However, the Board would like to see more progress on the criteria to determine the distribution of facilities funds. The Board would also like the Commission to continue collaborating with the Board on development of the Board policy on the purpose of charter schools and finding solutions to the centralized support issue. The Board will continue to develop the other pieces of the multiple authorizer system. Finally, the Board encourages the Legislature to provide facilities funding to address the issue of long-term financial stability and equity, which has been a clear issue in all of these reports, and to consider other supports for charter schools, especially some kind of centralized support system or structure.

ACTION: Motion to approve the submission of annual Board report on the State’s public charter schools in accordance with Hawaii Revised Statues Section 302D-21 as circulated (De Lima/Voss). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.

Board Member Cox stated that the School Community Council requests are general and are primarily regarding graduation dates and assessments.

ACTION: Motion to approve all School Community Council requests for exceptions to collective bargaining agreements, statutory waivers, and waivers of Board policy for School Year 2019-2020 for the schools listed in the agenda as described in the memoranda dated December 6, 2018 from Board Member Margaret Cox and Board designee Rodney Luke (Cox/De Lima). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.

Board Chairperson Payne reviewed proposed policy positions for the 2019 Legislative Session for the Board to adopt. She stated that these policy positions will guide the Board in its legislative advocacy for the upcoming legislative session and are intended to be used in conjunction with an ad hoc committee.

Board Chairperson Payne stated that the Board supports proposed legislation that advances the Board and Department’s Strategic Priorities for School Year 2018-2019 (“Strategic Priorities”), including measures that address needs identified in the Department’s Board-approved budget; provide resources for appropriate support structures that allow all students to engage in learning; advance equitable access to athletic facilities; address Title IX compliance; provide resources to ensure school facilities support students’ emotional and physical wellbeing; recognize the importance of addressing bullying, harassment, and discrimination in schools; expand early college opportunities; increase career and technical education; advance or provide resources for innovative, student-centered design; provide resources to expand pre-kindergarten; support leadership pipeline development; expand teacher recruitment and retention initiatives; support informed decision-making and priority setting through intentional engagement with stakeholders; and improve transparency and access to information.

Board Chairperson Payne stated that the Board also supports legislation that allows the Board to recruit and retain exceptional talent to lead the Hawaii State Public Library System (“HSPLS”) by raising the salary cap for the State Librarian position as well as legislation that addresses the needs identified in HSPLS’s Board-approved budget.

Board Chairperson Payne stated that the Board does not support legislation that prevents or hinders the Board or Department from addressing the Strategic Priorities, conflicts with the Board’s power to formulate statewide educational policy, or creates additional duties or responsibilities for the Board or Department without appropriating adequate resources to accomplish such duties or responsibilities.

ACTION: Motion to adopt Board policy positions for the 2019 Legislative Session as described in Board Chairperson Catherine Payne’s memorandum dated December 6, 2018 (De Lima/Cox). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.

Board Chairperson Payne stated that she would like Board Members to take a more active role in engaging with the Legislature by attending hearings, submitting testimony, and meeting with legislators. She stated that the best way to do this is to form an ad hoc committee made up of no more than four Board Members. She stated that the members of the ad hoc committee would act in accordance with the policy positions that the Board adopted earlier today and any future policy positions that the Board adopts.

Board Chairperson Payne authorized the creation of the 2019 Legislative Ad Hoc Committee and appointed Board Members Kili Namau‘u, Dwight Takeno, and Bruce Voss to serve as 2019 Legislative Ad Hoc Members, and herself to serve as Ad Hoc Committee Chairperson.

ACTION: Motion to approve the assignment of Board Chairperson Payne and Board Members Kili Namau‘u, Dwight Takeno, and Bruce Voss to a permitted interaction group, formed pursuant to Hawaii Revised Statutes 92-2.5(b)(2), to present, discuss, or negotiate the policy positions the Board adopted at its December 6, 2018 General Business Meeting and any new or amended policy positions the Board adopts for the 2019 Legislative Session with the authority described in Board Chairperson Payne’s memorandum dated December 6, 2018 through and until July 31, 2019 (De Lima/Cox). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.

VIII. Executive Session
This portion of the meeting was closed under Section 92-4 and Section 92-5(a)(2), (3), and (4), Hawaii Revised Statutes.
ACTION: Motion to move into executive session to consider the appointment of an employee for agenda item VIII.A., Board Action on appointment of Kaimuki-McKinley-Roosevelt Complex Area Superintendent, and to consult with the Board’s attorney on agenda item VIII.B., Update on the Hawaii State Teachers Association contract, the Hawaii Government Employee Association contracts, and related Hawaii State Labor Board matters (De Lima/Uemura). The motion carried unanimously with all members present voting aye.

The motion recessed at 2:14 p.m. and reconvened at 2:52 p.m.

Board Chairperson Payne asked if there was any public testimony. There was no public testimony at this time.

IX. Adjournment

Board Chairperson Payne adjourned the meeting at 2:54 p.m.