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Kihei Charter, Kekaulike top the county in Strive HI

Program measures schools in academics and other areas

Kihei Charter School and King Kekaulike High School earned top marks among all Maui County high schools in math, reading and science proficiency, according to Strive HI results released earlier this month.

In the 2018-19 academic year, Kihei Charter’s high school students led all schools in science proficiency at 60 percent and math proficiency at 39 percent, and were third in reading proficiency at 59 percent. King Kekaulike had the best reading proficiency scores at 66 percent and the second highest scores in both science (48 percent) and math (29 percent).

The state Department of Education’s Strive HI program aims to measure all public schools in various areas of academics, as well as factors like attendance, graduation and college enrollment rates, achievement gaps and overall growth from year to year.

Proficiency rates are the percentages of “full school year students” who took the test and received a valid test score, according to the DOE.

Maui High School also did well on the proficiency tests, scoring second highest in reading at 60 percent and third highest in science at 34 percent and third highest in math at 28 percent.

Full math, reading and science results for the high schools are as follows:

• Baldwin: 20 percent, 48 percent, 20 percent.

• Hana: 22 percent, 32 percent, 18 percent.

• King Kekaulike: 29 percent, 66 percent, 48 percent.

• Lahainaluna: 18 percent, 40 percent, 21 percent.

• Lanai: 18 percent, 36 percent, 13 percent.

• Maui: 28 percent, 60 percent, 34 percent.

• Molokai: 17 percent, 38 percent, 12 percent.

• Kihei Charter: 39 percent, 59 percent, 60 percent.

All county high schools finished above 80 percent for graduation rates. Molokai led with 88 percent, followed by Kihei Charter at 86 percent and King Kekaulike at 85 percent. As for college enrollment rates, Maui High was first with 57 percent, followed by King Kekaulike at 55 percent and Molokai at 54 percent.

Lahainaluna’s graduation rate rose from 73 percent in 2018 to 82 percent in 2019, the fifth best improvement among all public high schools statewide, not counting charters, according to a DOE news release.

Kihei Charter’s success also came with the lowest chronic absenteeism rates among county high schools at 2 percent, while King Kekaulike tied Lahainaluna for the highest absenteeism rates at 22 percent.

The Lunas, however, surpassed other schools in Career and Technical Education completion rates with 83 percent, followed by Maui High at 78 percent and Hana at 64 percent. The program offers students six career pathways with dozens of programs of study and also allows them to earn dual credits for college.

Baldwin raised its CTE program completion rate up 24 points over the previous academic year to 57 percent, the third highest growth in the state, according to the DOE release.

As for Maui County middle schools, Lokelani Intermediate School scored the highest marks in math (45 percent), reading (58 percent) and science (62 percent) proficiency. Maui Waena Intermediate came in second in math (35 percent) and reading (53 percent) while scoring third in science (51 percent). Kalama Intermediate earned the second highest scores in science among middle schools at 52 percent and the third highest scores in math at 28 percent, while tying Lahaina Intermediate for fourth in reading (41 percent).

Among elementary schools, Kamali’i did the best by far, scoring 87 percent in science, 71 percent in reading and 64 percent in math. Pukalani scored the second highest in science at 80 percent, followed by Kula at 72 percent and Paia at 66 percent. Paia’s scores were up 21 points over the previous school year, tied for the eighth highest science gain in the state, according to the DOE.

In reading, Pomaika’i, Haiku and Pu’u Kukui tied for second highest scores at 64 percent, followed by Kamehameha III and Kula at 63 percent. In math, Kihei scored second highest at 59 percent, followed by Pomaika’i and Pukalani at 58 percent.

Meanwhile, the DOE noted that Haiku Elementary upped its English language arts score by 14 points, the second highest English language arts gain in the state. Its math scores went up by 10 points, tied for the 10th highest math gain in the state.

Haiku Principal Tami Haili said that the school changed the way it approached its data. In both reading and math, the school worked to “constantly collect data and provide targeted and differentiated instruction for all students through small group instruction,” Haili said via email Friday.

“Students who needed extra help got what they needed and students who needed to be challenged were provided the opportunity,” she said.

Haili also credited a “very supportive” school community and said that with their help, Haiku provided contests and prizes when students and teachers met individual academic and class goals.

“Students were challenged not to meet proficiency, but to show growth,” Haili said. “We thought growth was the most important. We set individual goals for each student to grow 5 percent in both reading and math to win their individual challenge.”

The school was able to reach the 10 percent goal in both reading and math.

For full Strive HI results, visit www.hawaiipublicschools.org/VisionForSuccess/AdvancingEducation/StriveHIPerformanceSystem/Pages/2018-19-results.aspx.

For K-12 schools like Hana, Lanai and Kihei Charter, DOE data only lists results for the high schools.

* Colleen Uechi can be reached at cuechi@mauinews.com.