(Via Star Advertiser)
Christina Kishimoto begins her new job leading Hawaii public schools today, ahead of Monday’s start of the 2017-18 school year.
Her first day coincides with the board’s monthly meeting. Following the general business meeting, which starts at 1:30 p.m., the agenda says there will be “a short meet-and-greet” session with BOE members and Kishimoto. It’ll be held in Room 404 of the Queen Liliuokalani Building at 1390 Miller St.
Before accepting the Hawaii superintendent post, Kishimoto had been superintendent and chief executive officer since 2014 of Gilbert Public Schools, a Phoenix-area school district made up of 40 schools with 38,000 students. She previously served as superintendent of Hartford Public Schools, a district of about 22,000 students in Connecticut, from 2011 to 2014.
By comparison, Hawaii’s statewide school district is made up of 256 schools and 34 charters with 180,000 students.
Kishimoto has said she wants to raise student achievement in the islands above the rest of the country’s public schools, and that her top priority will be crafting an implementation plan for the DOE’s 2017-20 strategic plan. The goal-oriented plan sets out benchmarks for graduating more students, enrolling more graduates in college, retaining more teachers, improving test scores and closing the so-called achievement gap between high-needs students and their peers.
The Board of Education, which is charged with appointing the superintendent of education, executed a three-year contract with an annual $240,000 salary for Kishimoto. She replaces Kathryn Matayoshi, whose $200,000-a-year contract ended June 30.
The BOE, made up of appointees of Gov. David Ige, came under fire for its decision late last year to not renew Matayoshi’s contract despite positive evaluations. The search for her successor got off to a bumpy start after a former board member submitted his name for consideration but then withdrew.
Waipahu High School Principal Keith Hayashi, who was tapped to serve as interim superintendent during the transition, has returned to his school.
Source: Star Advertiser