HONOLULU — Hawaii Board of Education Chairman Garrett Toguchi recently praised Momilani Elementary, Royal Elementary, and Ewa Beach Elementary Schools for being named Blue Ribbon Schools at the Hawaii Distinguished Schools awards held at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Resort and Spa. The event was co-sponsored by Frito-Lay of Hawaii and the Hawaii State Department of Education.

“On behalf of the Board of Education, thank you every single teacher, administrator, counselor, custodian, cafeteria worker, and everyone else I may have missed, thank you for contributing to the education of our children,” Chair Toguchi said. “You have not only shown that you are up to the challenge, but these statistics show that you have met the challenge. Hawaii’s academic improvements are not anecdotal; there is a trend.”

Toguchi cited several exams in which Hawaii’s students continue to show gains over the years, including the 2009 Hawaii State Assessment, where reading proficiency has risen from 41 percent in 2003, to 60 percent in 2007, and reached 65 percent this year. In math, proficiency jumped from 20 percent in 2003, to 38 percent in 2007 and 44 percent this year.

Meanwhile, for the ninth consecutive year, the ACT Assessment scores of Hawaii’s college-bound public and private school students in the Class of 2009 continued to exceed or meet the national average. The ACT improvements validates the work of Hawaii’s schools in preparing students for first-year college courses. And the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress placed Hawaii among the nation’s leaders in significant gains in 4th-grade math from 2000 to 2009, and in 8th-grade math from 2007 to 2009.

More information about schools recognized at today’s Hawaii Distinguished Schools awards — including all 13 distinguished schools from which the three Blue Ribbon winners were selected, the two 2009 National Blue Ribbon Schools, schools that have maintained continuous improvement, and dozens of schools that have met Adequate Yearly Progress — is available on the Education Department’s Website at: http://lilinote.k12.hi.us/STATE/COMM/DOEPRESS.NSF/a1d7af052e94dd120a2561f7000a037c/76332a7572d2ffc60a25766e00049eb2?OpenDocument

‘Alex Da Silva is the Public Affairs Officer for the Hawaii Board of Education’

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