Hawaii teachers told that school system will be 'staying the course'
By Loren Moreno
Advertiser Education Writer
Acting Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi and former Superintendent Pat Hamamoto posted a video message to teachers and principals saying that the state’s public school system will be “staying the course.”
“The (Board of Education) has asked that I take on the role of acting superintendent during this difficult time,” Matayoshi said. “I'm very proud and humbled to be able to continue the work that the superintendent has begun, and we will be staying the course, moving the Department forward for the children of Hawaii.”
The video may be viewed at: http://doe.k12.hi.us/news/newsupt/index.htm.
Matayoshi and BOE Chairman Garrett Toguchi will hold a press conference at 3 p.m. at the Queen Liliuokalani Building to discuss the search for a new superintendent.
In Hamamoto’s portion of the video message, she reiterated that she was making a personal decision to resign and retire after some 34 years as a teacher, principal and DOE administrator.
“I also want to thank all the teachers, administrators, staff, and all who have made the children of Hawaii as successful as they are and have allowed the Department to continue its continuous improvement into the future,” Hamamoto said. “Thank you for your hard work, for your commitment, for your dedication, and most important thank you for caring about the children of Hawaii.”
Hamamoto’s departure comes as the public school system is in the throes of unprecedented budget cuts that led to furloughs of school teachers and the shortest instructional calendar in the country.
Hamamoto submitted her letter of resignation on Dec. 28, the same day Gov. Linda Lingle rejected a tentative agreement between the DOE and the Hawaii State Teachers Association that would have used $35 million from the state’s “rainy day” emergency fund to reduce the remaining furlough Fridays for the current school year.