Local Connection: Race to the Top - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Local Connection: Race to the Top

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By: Rick Blangiardi

Hawaii's public schools can sometimes be the subject of criticism but recent news coming out of the DOE is cause for celebration.

More than a year ago, the US department of education had major concerns about Hawaii's schools achieving progress in its second year of a four-year $75 million race to the top grant.

That Hawaii, given its track record, even received a grant was a minor miracle. Now in year three of the four-year grant, great success has been made.

No less than US education secretary Arne Duncan, who is in town this week, praised the turnaround. He acknowledged the initial risk of giving Hawaii the grant and said there were many doubters. He said Hawaii public schools have shown "amazing leadership in a relatively short amount of time."

Kudos to school superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi, her team, the principals, teachers and students who have worked hard to meet tough standards and keep the multi-million dollar grant in place.

Here's hoping for a successful final year in our race to the top.

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