Joe Yamamoto, principal at Maunaloa Elementary School, has been nominated for the second time for the $25,000 Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award. Yamamoto was also nominated for this award in 2011.
For more than 15 years Yamamoto has maintained high academic standards in the small school on Molokai’s West End.
In September of 2013, Maunaloa Elementary was recognized by the Hawaii State Department of Education as one of 14 schools that demonstrated exceptional achievement in the state’s new Strive HI Performance System. The school received $75,000 for this achievement.
The federal government in May of 2013 approved the Strive HI Performance System to replace outdated aspects of the federal No Child Left Behind Act.
Other nominees that round out the list include: Duwayne Abe, Salt Lake Elementary School; Laura Ahn, Kalihi Uka Elemenatary School; Wade Araki, Kaimukī High School; Chad Keone Farias, Keaʻau Elementary School; Daniel Hamada, Kapaʻa High School; Doreen Higa, Momilani Elementary School; Matthew Ho, Lāʻie Elementary School; Kris Kosa-Correia, Waikoloa Elementary and Middle School; Puaʻala McElhaney, Enchanted Lakes Elementary School; Ernest Muh, Helemano Elementary School; and Edward Oshiro, ʻEwa Makai Middle School.
The 13 were selected for their efforts to provide high-quality learning opportunities for their students, and will be recognized during a presentation this Saturday, March 29, at the Island Insurance Center in Honolulu.
The list will be narrowed at the weekend event with 10 of the nominees receiving a $1,000 personal cash award and commemorative plaque.
The remaining three will be identified as semifinalists, who will still be in the running for the $25,000 top award that includes $15,000 for a school project, and $10,000 as a personal cash prize. The semifinalists who finish in second and third will be honored with a $2,000 personal cash award.
The Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award is named after the Island Insurance Company founder, and is underwritten by the Island Insurance Foundation.
The winner will be announced at the Public Schools of Hawaii Foundation dinner on May 1, 2014, in Honolulu.