Kaunakakai Elementary School is located at the eastern fringe of Kaunakakai, Molokai’s main town. The town and the school support a rural community rich in cultural diversity and deeply rooted traditions. The 305 students who make up the preschool through sixth grade population include students of the only Pre-K legislative-funded program and the only preschool Special Education program on the island. The school represents a multicultural spectrum.
Kaunakakai School is known to be a school with heart. We promote three Hawaiian values: K-L-H (Kuleana-responsibility, Laulima cooperation, and Hoihi-respect). We live by these values daily to ensure that our campus exemplifies a place where students feel safe, feel welcome, are happy, and belong to a school family aside from their own at home.
To help all students succeed socially and emotionally, we have a school-wide Positive Behavioral Support System (PBIS)/Multi-Tiered Support System (MTSS), a Student Council to address student voice, a School Counselor, a Behavioral Health Specialist, a Primary School Adjustment Project (PSAP) coordinator to help our young students adjust to school, and a Parent Community Network Coordinator (PCNC), who is the catalyst between the school and the home.
To support student attendance,we are part of the K-12 Molokai Attendance Program (MAP) that tracks student attendance in meeting the state’s goal of reducing chronic absenteeism in the schools to a minimum average of 14% and below. This past year we exceeded the State with an 11% chronic absenteeism record.
Academically, our school’s Academic Review Team (ART) tracks the accomplishments of our Academic and Financial Plan (ACFN). We meet weekly to ensure that what is in the plan is implemented throughout the year and achieved by the end of the school year. We have a Response to Intervention (RTI) teacher who works closely with the RTI committee in identifying children with reading and math needs and services the lower-grade students with reading challenges. A Data Coach position was established to address the need for consistent data collection and use of data to inform instruction. This position has helped all teachers analyze their class data and, together address the learning needs of their students, not just the low achievers, but also the average and high achievers. We want to do what’s best for all students, not just the identified and struggling learners.
Our most recent accomplishment is being granted Six-Year Accreditation Status with a mid-cycle visit by the Accrediting Commission for Schools, Western Association of Schools and Colleges (ACS WASC) through June 30, 2023. This accreditation status is based on all of the information provided by the school, including the self-study report, and the satisfactory completion of the on-site accreditation visit.
Our school has been blessed with community partners who provide supports through funding, on-site and off campus learning connected to real life experiences. We want to thank: Kamehameha Schools, Lahaina Arts Association, Area Health Education Center, Maui Dance Council, Maui Realtors Association, Maui Economic Development Board, Friendly Isle United Way, Molokai Police Drug Abuse Resistence Education (DARE) Program, Alu Like, Penny Martin, Molokai Drugs, Inc., Kaunakakai Parent-Teacher Organization (KPTO), families and friends who've always supported our school ohana for many years.
Our school-wide motto has always been, "Ha'aheo O' Kaunakakai, The Pride of Kaunakakai." Our newest motto is complimentary of our first, “No Ka Pono O Na Haumana, It’s All About the Students” and that’s what we stand by at Kaunakakai School.