Categorized | Education

Pilot program to advance Race to the Top initiatives


The state Department of Education has announced the creation of a new three-year pilot program to begin in the 2012-13 school year.

The Intermediate Athletics program will be implemented in the complex areas of Nanakuli and Waianae in west Oahu, and in Ka‘u, Keeau, and Pahoa on the Big Island.

These areas are considered the two Zones of School Innovation (ZSI), which represent 5 percent of state’s lowest performing schools.

Intermediate Athletics will be available to sixth, seventh and eighth grade students, and will serve to provide extended learning opportunities, which are currently unavailable for students in these grade levels.

Students will be required to enroll in the After-School All-Stars program (, and maintain at least a 2.0 grade point average.

Proposed sports for the pilot program include football, basketball, volleyball and soccer. Additional sports may be added to the pilot program, depending on funding and available coaches.

More details on eligibility requirements and how to participate will be released in April 2012.

Schools eligible for the pilot program:

* Ka‘u High & Pahala Elementary (Grades 7 and 8)
* Keaau Middle
* Nanakuli High & Intermediate
* Pahoa High & Intermediate
* Waianae Intermediate

Proposed Oahu Sports
Boys: Football, Basketball
Girls: Basketball, Volleyball, Soccer

Proposed Big Island Sports
Boys: Basketball, Volleyball, Soccer
Girls: Basketball, Volleyball, Soccer

Keith Amemiya, a board member with the state Board of Education, spearheaded the effort, and secured funding from various donors to develop this program.

“We want to provide students the opportunity to engage in activities to extend their learning hours, and learn about self-confidence, self-discipline and self-esteem at the same time,” he said.

“We are pleased to offer this new pilot program, which is aimed at benefitting students in these specific underserved areas,” Deputy Superintendent Ronn Nozoe said. “Research shows these types of extra-curricular activities can make a positive impact with academic, social and emotional development.”

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