SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii -- The Hawaii Department of Education (DOE) released its "Race to the Top" (RTTT) accomplishments for the year showing positive results.

In a year of unprecedented improvement, students in every grade level increased both reading and math scores on the 2012 Hawaii State Assessment (HSA).

According to the Annual Yearly Progress (AYP) Report, schools located on Army bases (Hale Kula, Shafter, Solomon and Wheeler Elementary schools, in addition to Wheeler Middle School) are celebrating with overall gains.

"The significant strides in this Hawaii RTTT report reflect the extraordinary accomplishments of our educators and their commitment to prepare graduates for college or careers," said DOE Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi.

Shafter Elementary School increased from 88 to 94 percent in reading and 76 to 86 percent in mathematics.

"Shafter Elementary has seen a steady rise in reading and mathematics scores over the past three years," said Robin Martin, principal. "This rise is due entirely to the hard work of our teachers and their willingness to reflect on and make revisions in their instructional practices. We have kept a clear focus on literacy, numeracy and well-being of the learner, and our efforts have paid off."

Solomon Elementary increased from 65 to 83 percent in reading and 48 to 73 percent in mathematics. Principal Lynne Ajifu said her teachers analyzed data on students' progress to identify specific needs. The school team then used the information to target specific learning goals and to move all students forward.

The ongoing cycle at Solomon ensures all students continue their advancement towards meeting Common Core State Standards (CCSS).

According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) report, the nation and most other state results reflected marginal or zero growth. Hawaii, however, stood out as the only state to show both mathematics and reading gains in the 4th and 8th grades.

"In 2011, only one state, Hawaii, demonstrated statistically significant improvement in both reading and mathematics at both the 4th and 8th grades," said Jack Buckley, National Center for Education Statistics commissioner.

"We commend Hawaii for their performance and are encouraged by their continued growth in student achievement," Buckley added.

Beginning in the spring of 2013, the Hawaii's DOE will administer college and career readiness assessments to all middle and high school students. For the first time ever, the DOE will be able to comprehensively collect and examine college and career readiness data in reading, mathematics, science and English for students statewide in grades 8, 9, 10 and 11.

In 2010, the U.S. DOE awarded Hawaii with a four-year $75 million RTTT grant.

In school year 2013-2014, all grade levels will begin implementing CCSS in English language arts, mathematics and Algebra II courses.

Hawaii will join 46 states, three territories and the Department of Defense Education Activity (DODEA) to ensure that students are receiving a high quality of education, consistently, from school to school and state to state.

(Editors note: The School Liaison Office is part the Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation; U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii.)

"Race" Grant
For more information about the RTTT grant, call the School Liaison Office at 655-8326 or visit

Page last updated Tue March 19th, 2013 at 16:38