Waianae Elementary School principal wins excellence in leadership award

Ray Pikelny, Principal of Waianae Elementary.
Ray Pikelny, Principal of Waianae Elementary.(Island Insurance Foundation)
Updated: Jun. 10, 2020 at 8:38 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - A Leeward Oahu principal has scooped up a big prize.

Ray Pikelny, Principal of Waianae Elementary, won the 16th Annual Masayuki Tokioka Excellence in School Leadership Award given out by the Island Insurance Foundation.

“Principal Pikelny is a leader who is transforming Waianae Elementary into a model learning institution,” Tyler Tokioka, President of the foundation, said. “By recognizing outstanding principals such as Ray, it is our hope that her accomplishments will inspire others in public education.

Pikelny was among 15 local public school principals who were up for the award.

She’s led Waianae Elementary for nearly three years. She’s credited with bringing a positive shift to the school’s community beyond just the classroom.

Under her leadership, the school adopted the SWIM program, which stands for Self-respect, Worth it, Involved and Mindset. Students can earn SWIM points by doing good deeds, which can be redeemed for SWIM dollars and used as credit at the school’s online storefront, or to shop on Amazon.

Part of the Masayuki Tokioka Excellence award is a $25,000 check.

She plans to use the money to start a school-led credit union using the school’s SWIM dollar system.

It will provide students and families the chance to learn financial literacy through activities and long-term financial planning.

Principals Scott Moore of Waialua Elementary and Jennifer Luke-Payne of Kaaawa Elementary were also named as semi-finalists. They received a $2,000 cash award.

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