Extracurricular Programming to Resume Aug. 19 at Hawai‘i Public Schools
Hawaiʻi State Department of Education extracurricular and co-curricular activities are scheduled to begin in person on Aug. 19. All programming will be required to adhere to state and county declarations and follow health and safety protocols in the Department’s Return to Learn plan. The date is subject to change as HIDOE continues to monitor the situation and guidance issued by health and government officials.
The start date aligns with the Department’s directive to schools to focus the first two weeks of the new school year on three priorities: assessing student learning needs; testing and adjusting school safety protocols; and conducting employee training and preparing for classroom and virtual instruction.
Maui Mayor Michael Victorino responded to Maui Now’s request for comment about the timing of the return saying, “I believe that right now would be a good time to start up various activities. When it comes to extracurricular activities, if social or physical distancing can be done, wearing of a mask if possible, and the safety and well-being of our students are kept as the priority, I fee confident we can start up.”
He continued saying, “We’ve been keeping our youngsters cooped up at home and not really being able to get out and participate with their friends and family as far as activities like sports, band and other areas. So, I believe they have protocols put in place… but I think that confidently, they’re working to make sure that the safety and well being of our students is priority and they’re not going to do anything to endanger them.”
“We recognize the importance of extracurricular activities when it comes to the overall educational experience of our students. Given the current global health crisis, we are taking steps to ensure the safety of our students and staff while trying to balance a whole-child approach to learning that these programs provide,” Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto said. “We will continue to work closely with medical and health officials to evaluate our processes and procedures as this pandemic evolves.”
Extracurricular and co-curricular activities include, but are not limited to, athletics, band, academic competitions and clubs. Specific examples include:
- Fall sports: football, cheerleading, cross country, air rifle, girls volleyball, and bowling
- Speech and debate team in-person meetings
- Marching band practice
- Drama club rehearsals
- Staff professional development
HIDOE remains committed to reopening schools safely on Aug. 4 for the fall semester. As the COVID-19 situation evolves or as new health and safety guidance becomes available, HIDOE will adjust plans to ensure that a safe learning and working environment is provided for students, teachers and staff. For more information about the Department’s Return to Learn plan, click here.