Monday, April 19, 2021
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Tuesday, March 23, 2021
BOE approves panel to begin superintendent search
By News Release @ 11:59 PM :: 595 Views :: Education K-12

BOE approves panel to begin superintendent search

News Release from HSTA, March 18, 2021

The Hawaii Board of Education Thursday March 18, 2021, voted to approve the creation of a special committee to set a search timeline and process to select a new superintendent for Hawaii public schools. The board also spent time discussing whether an interim superintendent should be eligible or prohibited from applying for the permanent superintendent’s post, but did not make a decision on that issue.

Current Superintendent Christina Kishimoto has said she will not seek another contract when her current agreement expires at the end of July. She made the announcement last week, after principals’ and teachers’ unions, along with education advocates and some parents testified they had lost faith in her leadership.

The board voted Thursday to create the investigative committee to begin outlining a search process, assigning the chairs of the board’s standing committees, Student Achievement Committee Chair Margaret Cox, Human Resources Chair Dwight Takeno, Finance and Infrastructure Chair Bruce Voss, and BOE Chair Catherine Payne to the committee. Payne will serve as committee chair.

Cheri Nakamura, executive director of a public education advocacy group called the HEʻE Coalition, told board members “we support the BOE looking for an interim superintendent, who would not be eligible for the permanent position, and who is first and foremost for our students”

“This interim would hopefully build confidence among principals, teachers, and community members and stabilize the system. We would hope that this person would be an effective listener and communicator, build on the assets we already have in the system, and work with the BOE on a strategic and systematic approach on school improvement,” Nakamura testified Thursday.

Kenneth Uemura, the BOE’s vice chair, said he supports considering the same person for both the short-term and long-term superintendent posts.

“The interim superintendent will encompass, really, an important and critical period of transition for the DOE, as we address the COVID-related outcomes, some communication shortfall, the fiscal federal dollars and the budget,” Uemura said.

“The selection, to me, of the interim superintendent, is as important as selecting a new superintendent,” he added.

“The interim superintendent could potentially be a new superintendent, so the vetting” is imperative, Uemura said. “It makes sense for the selection committee to look at both the interim and the permanent superintendent at the same time.”

Payne responded to Uemura’s comments by saying, “We may not have the luxury of a long-term search for an interim superintendent depending on how things evolve.”

In her memo laying out the plan to begin the search, Payne initially said the interim superintendent shouldn’t apply for the permanent position.

“Whether that would be perceived as an unfair advantage by people in the community and people in the department is a consideration we have to make,” Payne said, citing one reason to bar the interim from applying for the permanent spot.

“If the interim were part of the candidate mix, that requires a lot of time and distraction from the work of getting out schools open if that is going to be our focus,” Payne added.

Cox told her colleagues “I’m torn on this,” because she asked, “what if the interim superintendent is super and then we’re saying up front” that they can’t apply for the permanent position.

Cox said the BOE needs to get an interim superintendent selected as soon as possible because fall school reopening plans have to be done before schools get out for summer.

“We need an interim superintendent that has a clear plan on what it is we have to do to help the students who have lost so much learning time and have to catch up,” Cox said.

“What we see is, there have to be clear directions from the top so the superintendent has to have a clear plan on how we’re going to address the needs of all of these kids,” Cox added.

“We need to be up and running and we need to have the schools have a clear picture from the top of what it is they need to do to get things running for the fall,” she said.

Uemura said, “The consideration for the interim should be in the same thought process as selecting a new superintendent.”

“I am not in favor of excluding the person,” because he said, “the board will have the ability to see what the person does in the interim.”

“You’re kind of limiting your pool of candidates” if you rule out an interim superintendent from applying for the permanent job, Uemura added.

BOE member Kaimana Barcarse said he “wanted to recognize those who submitted testimony. I appreciate the supportive, can-do attitude in which the testimonies came in and the real desire to find a pathway forward, especially in these crazy COVID times.”

The board voted unanimously to set up a committee to outline the search process, including a timeline and considerations that need to be taken into account for the search.

A second committee, to be named later, will engage in the superintendent search.

“There will be two committees and lots of opportunities for community, student, and Department of Education staff to give us input,” Payne said.

Listen to an audio recording of the BOE meeting here.



TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


808 Silent Majority

ACA Signups Hawaii


Alliance Defending Freedom

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

American Council of Trustees and Alumni


Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Astronomy Hawaii

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Better Hawaii

Blaisdell Memorial Project

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

Coffee Break

DVids Hawaii

E Hana Kakou Kelii Akina


Fix Oahu!

Follow the Money Hawaii

Frank in Hawaii

Front Page Magazine

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Credit Union Watch

Hawaii Crop Improvement Association

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Advocates

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federalist Society

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii Future Project

Hawaii Gathering of Eagles

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Homeschool Association

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Life Alliance

Hawaii March for Life

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Smokers Alliance

Hawaii State Data Lab

Hawaii Together

Heritage Foundation



Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

I Vote Hawaii

If Hawaii News

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Iowa Meets Maui

Jackson v Abercrombie

Jihad Watch

July 4 in Hawaii

Kahle v New Hope

Kakaako Cares

Kau TEA Party

Kauai Co GOP

Keep Hawaii's Heroes


Land and Power in Hawaii

Legislative Committee Analysis Tool

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Malulani Foundation

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

Malama Pregnancy Center of Maui

Mauna Kea Recreational Users Group

Middle East Forum--The Legal Project

Mililani Conservatives for Change

Military Home Educators' Network Oahu

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

Muslim Brotherhood in America

NAMI Hawaii


National Christian Foundation Hawaii

National Parents Org Hawaii

National Wind Watch

New Hawaiian

New Zeal

NFIB Hawaii News

No GMO Means No Aloha

Northwest Economic Policy Seminar

Not Dead Yet, Hawaii

Now What I Really Think

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Oahu Alternative Transport

ObamaCare Abortion Hawaii


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Pacific Aviation Museum

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

PEACE Hawaii

People vs Machine

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii


Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Republican Party -- Hawaii State

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

Robotics Organizing Committee

Save Dillingham Airfield

School Choice in Hawaii

Sink the Jones Act

Statehood for Guam

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

UCC Truths

US Tax Foundation Hawaii Info

VAREP Honolulu

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii