Think About It: The Race Is (Back) On - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

January 16, 2012

Think About It: The Race Is (Back) On

Even with the recent sense of relief over the apparent détente between the state and the Hawaii State Teachers' Association, it should come as no surprise that Hawaii didn't fare too well in year #1 of its mission related to the Race To The Top $75-million grant. As the U.S. Department of Education report indicates, delays in hiring, "significant setbacks" in certifying teachers and principals, time management issues in getting things done, et al., probably add up to a D on the year #1report card.

Let's hope that patience is truly a virtue here, and that the follow-up visit in a couple of months shows an even greater sense of urgency and purpose than was used to finally settle the labor dispute. Hopefully, the DOE and everyone else involved in the Race To The Top project locally can now move swiftly and productively to not only ensure that we don't lose the grant money, but also that the archaic system can be shifted to live up to the promises made when Hawaii first applied for the grant almost two-years ago.

Revamping systems rife with entitlements and historical expectations, combined with asking for additional work from teachers already burdened with paperwork and compliance triviata on so many issues is a tedious and difficult task, to be sure. But let's hope that re-directing this education ship results in a smoother voyage and glorious days ahead for our school kids, and not something akin to the Titanic and its ill-fated voyage. Think about it…

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