Categorized | Education

Lingle, Aiona on selection as ‘Race to the Top’ finalist


Gov. Linda Lingle issued the following statement after the U.S. Department of Education announced Hawaii is among 18 states and the District of the Columbia to be selected as a Round 2 finalist in the “Race to the Top” grant competition.

“The selection of Hawaii as Round 2 ‘Race to the Top’ finalist by the U.S. Department of Education reflects the hard work by the Hawaii Department of Education, Board of Education, my Administration and the community to develop an application package that outlines a clear plan with specific benchmarks to raise student performance and help struggling schools,” Lingle said.

“Whether or not Hawaii receives ‘Race to the Top’ funds, we are committed to implementing the initiatives detailed in our application plan. The goals laid out in our application are achievable and the strategies for meeting these goals will give our schools the tools and resources to help students be successful in the classroom while preparing them for their future careers.

“We will continue to work closely with the DOE and BOE over the next two weeks to prepare our state’s presentation to the U.S. DOE in order to demonstrate Hawaii’s vision for education and our plan for achieving meaningful education reform.”

Aiona credits collaboration for achievement

Lt. Gov. Duke Aiona issued the following statement regarding Hawai‘i being one of 19 finalists in the second round of federal “Race to the Top” competitive grants being offered by the U.S. Department of Education to support education reform efforts.

“Hawaii’s ‘Race to the Top’ application represents a collaborative effort among our Administration, the Hawaii Department of Education, non-profit organizations, legislators and community leaders.

“I am proud that we have set specific benchmarks for high school graduation rates, teacher performance, and student test scores which will allow the public to measure whether we are meeting our public education goals.

“This application demonstrates our commitment to assist struggling schools, improve school performance from kindergarten to college, and ensure that all of our students are equipped and prepared to enter both college and the working environment.

“It’s one thing to say education is going to improve, and it’s entirely different to actually do it. This application is a significant step in the right direction, and we will continue to work each day to improve our schools and set a course to a brighter future for our children.”

Aiona’s policy agenda for education includes his strong support for implementation of “Race to the Top” educational reforms. Hawaii’s application for $75 million in federal funds being offered by the U.S. Department of Education focuses on four education areas: adopting standards and assessments that prepare Hawaii’s students to succeed in college and the workplace; building data systems that measure student growth and success; recruiting, developing, rewarding and retaining effective teachers and principals; and providing targeted support to struggling schools and students.

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