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Hamada is interim Kaua‘i school leader

LIHU‘E — Tuesday, most of the state Department of Education educators returned to their classrooms in accordance with the DOE school calendar.

This meant an uptick in activity in the DOT Kaua‘i Complex Area offices, where Interim Complex Area Superintendent Daniel Hamada was meeting with his leadership team amidst an office environment where phones became a part of people’s makeup and others scurried with leftovers from unpacking material for the new school year.

Hamada assumed the superintendent position on July 15, according to the DOE. Former CAS Paul Zina has moved to Kapa‘a Middle School as its principal.

According to the DOE, veteran educator Hamada was appointed as interim complex area superintendent for Kaua‘i in July 2022.

Hamada retired in Dec. 2018 as principal of Kapa‘a High School following more than 40 years as an educator and leader in the DOE. He previously served as Kaua‘i complex area superintendent for seven years, and as assistant superintendent for the statewide DOE former Office of Curriculum, Instruction and Student Support for four years.

Since retiring, Hamada has been working with the Leadership Institute to mentor new principals in their first and second years, primarily on Kaua‘i. This has helped to keep him up-to-date on what is happening in public education in Hawai‘i.

During a brief chat with the interim CAS between his many discussions, Hamada suggested that Zina was needed at Kapa‘a Middle School because the island has very-young leadership at the school level, and the Kapa‘a area needed to have the experience that Zina has — more than 23 years with the DOE as a teacher, vice principal and principal before being appointed CAS in 2020.

“I’ve worked with Superintendent Keith Hayashi for 30 years,” Hamada said. “My understanding in accepting this assignment is transition. Primarily, my duties include looking for and training potential candidates for CAS as well as strengthening the different districts that include Kapa‘a, Lihu‘e and Waimea.”

He added that he will also help the Kaua‘i Interscholastic Federation in this transition phase. The KIF is the governing body for high-school sports on the island, and a member conference of the Hawai‘i High School Athletic Association.

Kapa‘a High School Principal Tommy Cox was recently elected to fill the at-large seat for Sections 3 and 7 of the National Federation of State High School Associations that govern a lot of the HHSAA sporting events.

Cox, who has been the principal of Kapa‘a High since 2019 following his service as the school’s vice principal for three years, and a fifth-grade educator for six years prior to that, is currently the president of both the KIF and HHSAA.

Students return to class starting Aug. 1.
Source: The Garden Island

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