March 11, 2020
Dear Hawai'i DOE staff, faculty, parents and guardians,
We recognize that Hawai'i State Department of Education (HIDOE) sponsored student travel and professional development are important parts of our overall academic design. In light of the evolving COVID-19 situation, we need to take additional precautionary steps to ensure the health and well-being of our school communities.
As such, HIDOE is canceling all school and Department-related travel to the U.S. mainland and international destinations until the end of the 2019-2020 school year, effective March 12.
There are school trips scheduled to depart Hawai'i on Wednesday, March 11. Although these trips will not be bound by the upcoming department-wide cancellations, parents have the right to modify their travel plans accordingly. If you decide to cancel or modify your school-related travel plans, please notify your child's school immediately. Making this last minute decision is a personal one, so please consider that travel costs already incurred may not be reimbursable.
We understand the financial hardship this will potentially cause and we encourage families, schools and complex areas to discuss the possibility of rescheduling or reimbursement with their travel partners (i.e. travel agents, airlines and accommodations) to the extent possible. We did not make this decision lightly knowing the impact it will have on our school communities; however, the safety of our students and staff is our highest priority.
Please continue to monitor HIDOE COVID-19 updates on the Department's website at www.hawaiipublicschools.org.
Dr. Christina M. Kishimoto