KAANAPALI - HAWAII : The deadly fire on the Hawaiian island of Maui on August 8 destroyed King Kamehameha III Elementary School in Lahaina. And forced all three of the other public schools in town to close until officials determine that the air and water are safe.

As of recent, nearly 60 percent of the 3,000 public school students at Lahaina, a historic town in West Maui, had not enrolled in another public school or signed up for remote classes, essentially vanishing from the school system.

Ms. Kohler's son, Kimo Varona, whose first day of sixth grade was supposed to be the day after the fire, still hasn't returned to class weeks later as his family stays at a West Maui house that was offered as a refuge by a family they had never met.

Kimo, whose education had already been upended by Covid-19 closures, longs for some sense of normalcy with his classmates.

'' The kids are having to grow up really fast right now.'' said Ms. Kohler, a firefighter on Maui who helped respond to the Lahaina blaze and has turned her focus to finding an adequate school program for her son.

For now, the Hawaii Department of Education has offered two options for Lahaina students : take the bus to school elsewhere on Maui or enrol in a remote learning program, similar to how students learned during Covid-19.

Ms.Kohler is considering signing up Kimo for remote classes but believes students should return to school in the West Maui community they know as home as soon as possible.

The three other public schools in Lahaina - Princess Nahienaena Elementary School, Lahaina Intermediate School and Lahainaluna High School  - remain largely intact, with only some damage from wind, debris and ash.

With Homes lost, Maui now struggles to save its schools.

The World Students Society thanks author Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs.


Post a Comment

Grace A Comment!