2020 Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award Recipient
The Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award was created to make a difference in public education by recognizing outstanding public school principals in Hawaii for their efforts to provide high-quality learning opportunities for their students.
Pikelny has been principal of Waianae Elementary for nearly three years. Under her leadership, the school and community have undergone a positive shift in operation and attitude. She often tells her staff their jobs involve more than just teaching; they can potentially have a life-altering impact on students and their families. With that mindset in place and several innovative programs in practice, the school has made tremendous strides in creating positive and nurturing relationships among teachers, students and the community. SWIM (self-respect, worth it, involved and mindset) is one such program for students that rewards and supports positive behavior. Students earn SWIM points for attendance, academics, behavior and acts of kindness. Those points can then be redeemed for SWIM dollars to be used at the school’s online storefront or to shop on Amazon.
Pikelny plans use her award monies to start a school-led credit union using the school’s SWIM dollar system. Students and their parents would be able to learn about finance by attending financial literacy workshops, incorporating opportunities to make money while participating in literacy activities. They would also be able to apply their learnings about financial management through the credit union’s various accounts and programs like long-term financial planning.
Congratulations Ms.Pikelny! We are so proud of you!
Physical Activity is one of the best things people can do to improve their health. CDC states that it’s possible—and important—to be physically active while social distancing. Let's kick off our Nānākuli-Wai'anae Heart Challenge to keep our students active and healthy!
Upon our return from Winter Break on Tuesday, January 5, 2021, your child will remain in the same Learning Model he or she was in in December. Due to the level of virus in our community, the majority of our students will continue to be in the Distance Learning Model. Thank you for making sure they log in every day in order to learn and practice the skills they will need to be ready for the next grade.
We made this decision after reviewing health data and having consulted with our health partners. All nine Nānākuli-Wai‘anae Complex Schools have decided that our community will be safer with Distance Learning. Our Coast has a positive test rate 5x higher than the Oahu rate. Drive it back down: wear masks, stay 6 ft apart, and wash hands frequently! The holiday season is a hard time to stay apart, but it’s the only way to be safe.
It is important to have a period of Distance Learning after the holidays to make sure that everyone is safe. By the week of January 18 – 22, 2021, we will know how many cases there are in our community and if the numbers meet the criteria set out by DOE and DOH, then we will give you notice that students will begin to return starting with smaller groups. This will allow us to make sure we have solid procedures on campus that ensure students wear their masks, are 6 feet apart, and wash their hands frequently. Solid procedures will allow us to continue bringing more students back onto campus if the rates are low. Elementary students will return before secondary students based on research and the health professionals’ recommendations.
The health and safety of our students and our community is of utmost importance. We remain committed to delivering quality educational and social emotional services during this most challenging time.
Please reach out to your respective school should you need assistance and support. Mahalo for your continued understanding and support!
Have a Happy and Safe Holiday Season!
Disa Hauge Interim Nānākuli-Wai‘anae Complex Area Superintendent