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Most public schools to offer in-person summer programs

Other larger child care programs still working out details

As Maui County public schools prepare to offer in-person summer programs, other popular child care programs like Summer PALS are still mulling their plans during the pandemic.

Baldwin High School is one of 15 sites statewide and the only one in the Maui district that plans to have traditional, in-person summer classes for public and non-public school students, state Department of Education officials said in an email last week.

High schoolers were also given an option for online courses. The online registration site on Monday showed that courses were full, but students could join a waitlist. To register, visit sites.google.com/hawaiidoe.k12.hi.us/e-school/registration/ summer-2021-registration.

Nearly all other Maui County schools will offer summer programming for their students via “learning hubs,” which will vary by school, the DOE said. Currently the majority of the participating Maui County schools will be doing in-person learning, though families should check with their schools for more details.

The school-based learning hubs will be based on the needs of the students, providing opportunities for credit advancement, credit recovery, enrichment, intervention and/or remediation and transition. Program schedules will vary by school, but most learning hub programs will span about a five-week period from June to July. Schools providing summer instruction via learning hubs will send updates to their own school communities.

In Maui County, Lahainaluna High, Lanai High & Elementary and Molokai High will not be offering the hub program, the DOE said.

The program is free after the state Board of Education held a special meeting on April 15 and approved DOE’s plans to use $1 million of federal relief funds to cover tuition costs for Hawaii public school students attending official summer school programs.

Schools were encouraged to prioritize summer programs for graduating seniors; students who are academically behind; students in transition grades, such as incoming kindergarteners, elementary to middle school, middle to high school and high school to college or career; and students identified with engagement challenges due to the pandemic.

Some elementary schools are also offering a free, three-week classroom experience for incoming kindergarten students with little or no preschool experience.

The “Summer Start Kindergarten Transition Program” is being provided by the DOE in partnership with Hawaii P-20 Partnership for Education. Families can contact their child’s school for details.

For more information on the DOE’s summer learning programs, visit www.hawaiipublicschools.org/Pages/Home.aspx and click on “summer learning.”

Organizers for other programs, meanwhile, are still considering their summer plans.

Maui County spokesman Brian Perry said Monday that county officials are still discussing details for Summer PALS, a traditionally low-cost program that attracts more than 1,000 youngsters every year and was suspended last summer due to the pandemic.

At the Maui Family YMCA, officials are mulling a potential partnership or collaboration. Last year the YMCA worked with Maui County on a child care program during the summer.

* Melissa Tanji can be reached at mtanji@mauinews.com.

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