REP. MARUMOTO: Queen Lydia Liliuokalani School Should Not Be Closed

Representative Barbara Marumoto
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Representative Barbara Marumoto

BY REP. BARBARA MARUMOTO – Because I believe in the value of small schools and small classes, I would oppose the closing of any school in the 19th House District on Oahu.


However, in the case of Queen Lydia Lili’uokalani School, history and tradition argues even more strongly against closure.  It would indeed be ironic to shut its doors on the 100th school year since the Queen dedicated its opening.

I support the friends and families of Lili’uokalani who are protesting the recommendation of the Consolidation Report.  I understand that the closing would save the State only $372,000 a year, and some parents even dispute that figure.

I ask the Board and the Department of Education (BOE) to carefully consider whether the cost savings are significant enough to close a school.

I ask the BOE and Department of Education (DOE) to weigh the effect on students who will bear the emotional burden of dislocation.  If you insist on closure, consider giving the students sufficient time to adjust to the move.

Perhaps five years would help, but I still believe that the cost savings are too meager to end this beloved institution in Kaimuki Town.

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  1. I guess Rep. Marumoto is doing her job, trying to keep a school open in the district she represents. She writes “It would indeed be ironic to shut its doors on the 100th school year since the Queen dedicated its opening.” But I say, this is the perfect opportunity to close the door on a century of misdirected nostalgia. Because, changing only one word in what Marumoto said “in the case of Queen Lydia Lili’uokalani School, history and tradition argues even more strongly [in favor of] closure.” Liliuokalani was overthrown for good reason. Her regime was corrupt and ineffective; and in the end she tried to impose a new Constitution to give herself nearly dictatorial powers. Keeping her name on a school just because she originally dedicated it is no different from South Carolina continuing to fly the Confederate flag over its state capitol.

  2. Aue. There goes Ken Conklin disparaging Hawaiians based on their national origin, Ko Hawai’i Pae Aina, and disparaging the Queen when she is not here to defend herself.

    Despite singling out and targeting the queen based on her national origin, Ko Hawai’i Pae Aina, the queen LOVED her people.

    She was smart. She described the love that she has for her people.


    It is wonderful that Republican Barbara Marumoto is defending the school.

    Mahalo Representative Marumoto. It is much appreciated!

  3. The debates taking place in each school district to close schools that have declining enrollment are losing their focus. The only consideration should be given any weight at all in these meetings is whether keeping the schools open is economically or practically feasible. It is not be about he history surrounding the school’s namesake or even whether the people who once attended that school have good memories about their childhood spent there. These meetings should simply focus on whether the schools are needed in order to accomplish the greater goal of educating the children that the school system is intended to serve. It is with some irony that the same Republican politicians who are normally critical of DOE spending would argue to keep these schools open when clearly the goal of educating the children could be accomplished more economically in other ways. Want to keep your neighborhood school open? Convert it to a charter school. I guess it’s like the debate about earmarks going on in Congress. All earmarks are bad unless they benefit my district, eh?

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