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BOE sets July 30 special meeting to consider school reopening calendar changes

Board to consider adding PD days in early August and bringing students back to campuses later

The Hawaii State Board of Education (BOE) has scheduled a special meeting for Thursday, July 30, to take action on a number of scenarios that would give educators more time to prepare before students return to class during the pandemic.

The virtual meeting will take place the day after educators report back to campuses across the state for training and preparation. It begins at 1 p.m.

The meeting agenda published Friday afternoon lists three action items, giving teachers, parents, and students an idea of what the BOE is considering.

  1. Board Action on revisions to the Department of Education’s 2020-2021 school calendar: additional training and professional development days for teachers and staff at the beginning of the school year and delaying Students’ First Day to ensure health and safety preparedness for schools
  2. Board Action on general waiver to allow reduction of the 180 day school year and 1,080 student instructional hours pursuant to Hawaii Revised Statutes Section 302A-251, consistent with revisions to the Department of Education’s 2020-2021 school calendar
  3. Board Action on Board expectations regarding: (1) focusing additional training and professional development days included in the revisions to the Department of Education’s 2020-2021 school calendar on health, safety, and distance learning; (2) starting student instruction for the 2020-2021 school year in distance learning mode; (3) mandating masks on public school campuses; and (4) detailed, written, publicly posted guidance from the Department of Health

Hawaii State Teachers Association President Corey Rosenlee said, “We’re grateful that the Board of Education members heard educators’ testimony loud and clear. They are now looking at enacting important safeguards that we have been asking for over the last few weeks.”

Please be on the lookout for future communication about HSTA’s positions on the above items, what HSTA will be recommending to the board, and how we can take action together.

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Author: Keoki Kerr
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