About The Kaʻū Calendar

Ka`u, Hawai`i, United States
A locally owned and run community newspaper (www.kaucalendar.com) distributed in print to all Ka`u District residents of Ocean View, Na`alehu, Pahala, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Volcano Village and Miloli`i on the Big Island of Hawai`i. This blog is where you can catch up on what's happening daily with our news briefs. This blog is provided by The Ka`u Calendar Newspaper (kaucalendar.com), Pahala Plantation Cottages (pahalaplantationcottages.com), Local Productions, Inc. and the Edmund C. Olson Trust.

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Ka`u News Briefs Sunday, Nov. 1, 2015

Ka`u `Ohana Band is preparing for a holiday concert at Ocean View Swap Meet on Saturday, Nov. 28. See more below.
Photo from Lisa Archuletta
KA`U STUDENTS ARE TAKING fewer tests this year. The state is ahead of President Obama’s call to reduce testing in schools. Last school year, Hawai`i Department of Education performed a review of all assessments required by the state. Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi and Deputy Superintendent Stephen Schatz listened to concerns from the field, including administrators and teachers, and held discussions with Hawai`i State Teachers Association. As a result, HIDOE streamlined state requirements for testing students for this school year.
Kathryn Matayoshi
      “Teaching and learning is the primary mission of our schools and our work,” Matayoshi said. “Tests play a role in supporting teaching and learning, but that role must be balanced with the critical importance of instruction and student supports.” 
      HIDOE eliminated the requirement for five tests and has proposed eliminating an additional required test. Actions to reduce testing for this school year include:
      Ended mandatory statewide requirement for three End-of-Course exams. The state no longer requires that high school students take a 60- to 90-minute test at the end of their Algebra 1, Algebra 2 and U.S. History courses;
      Ended mandatory statewide requirement for ACT exams in grades 9 and 10. This reduced testing for high school freshman and sophomores by four hours per student in each grade; and
      Proposed to U.S. Department of Education to eliminate statewide requirement for grade 8 ACT test, which is a readiness measure in the Strive HI Performance System for middle schools. This would reduce testing of eighth-graders by 3.5 hours/student.
      In July 2015, Matayoshi sent a letter to the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium expressing concern about the “burden of test administration during the spring testing window and the time required for testing.” She will be reiterating the call for more streamlined Smarter Balanced testing at a meeting of all state superintendents this month.
      The Smarter Balanced Assessments in mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy are aligned to the Hawai`i Common Core Standards and designed to measure whether students are “on track” for readiness in college and/or career. These are mandatory assessments given to students in grades 3-8 and 11. On average, tested students in Hawai`i took seven hours to complete the tests. The test is not timed; students are given appropriate time to answer all questions.
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KA`U NEWS BRIEFS are five years old today, a daily Internet extension of The Ka`u Calendar newspaper, which is mailed to 5,500 postal addresses at the south end of the Big Island, with an additional 2,000 in stands. Ka`u News Briefs are at kaunewsbriefs.blogspot.com and on Facebook and Twitter. These outreach sites were designed by Geneveve Fyvie, and the Facebook page is managed by intern William Neal. Editor for all three is Ron Johnson. Publisher is Julia Neal.
      The Ka`u Calendar was founded by Neal in November 2002, 13 years ago, with Associate Editor Nalani Parlin. Art director is Tanya Ibarra.
      The Ka`u Calendar and Ka`u News Briefs are supported by volunteer photographers and news gatherers from throughout Ka`u. Send news and images to ron@kaucalendar.com. The print version is supported by volunteers who meet each month to assemble the paper, including a contingent from Na`alehu Hongwanji.
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U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono
SEN. MAZIE HIRONO EXPRESSED CONCERN about the Obama Administration’s announcement of additional military commitments in the Middle East. 
      “Congress and the American people need to hear more details from the Administration about how the deployment of a team of approximately 50 Special Operations Forces to Syria and other additional resources being provided to our regional partners fit into a broader strategy to defeat ISIL and stabilize Syria, Hirono said.
      “The President’s latest decision, which follows a number of other instances where Special Operations Forces have been on the ground in Syria, raises the question of whether a prolonged military campaign against ISIL requires the need for specific Congressional authority.
      “The civil war in Syria and our coalition fight against ISIL there add layers of complexity in a country and region where there are no easy answers. These two complicating factors in Syria require a multi-pronged approach. I support Secretary Kerry’s efforts to bring parties, including Russia and Iran, to the table to begin to find a diplomatic path forward to end the Syrian civil war.
      “In our effort to degrade and destroy ISIL, the President has reiterated that it is not in our national interest to send U.S. combat troops into yet another ground war in the Middle East. I agree, and as a member of the Senate Armed Services and Intelligence Committees, I will hold the Administration to that commitment.”
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HAWAI`I VOLCANOES NATIONAL PARK has announced flight plans for November 2015:
      Nov. 2, between 10 a.m. and 11 a.m., and Nov. 6, between 12 p.m. and 1 p.m., flying camp supplies and equipment from lower `Ainahou fuel break to Keauhou campsite for guinea grass control;
      Nov. 4, between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m., for training and short-haul recertification at Kilauea summit;
      Nov. 4, 10 and 19, between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m., to transport fencing material and equipment to Kahuku-Kapapala boundary between 7,000- and 9,000-ft. elevation;
      Nov. 10, between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., for ungulate surveys and control work in Kahuku between 3,000- and 7,000-ft. elevation; and
      Nov. 12, between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m., to transport fencing material to `Ola`a approximately 4,000-ft. elevation.
      Management of the park requires the use of aircraft to monitor and research volcanic activity, conduct search-and-rescue missions and law enforcement operations, support management of natural and cultural resources and to maintain backcountry facilities.
      In a statement, the park said it regrets any noise impact to residents and park visitors. Dates and times are subject to change based on aircraft availability and weather.
Interested Ka`u residents can learn all aspects of the farming business.
Photo from The Kohala Center
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APPLICATIONS ARE DUE by this Wednesday, Nov. 4 from Ka`u residents for The Kohala Center’s Beginning Farmer-Rancher Development Program. Since 2012, the program has taught 78 aspiring farmers and ranchers on Hawai`i Island the knowledge and skills essential to running an agricultural business. Instructors include researchers and extension agents from the University of Hawai`i, agricultural experts from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, successful farmers and food producers and professionals providing support services to ag businesses.
      The 14-session course begins this Saturday, Nov. 7 in Honoka`a and meets every other Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Subjects covered include production planning, farm design, soil management, composting and vermicomposting, cover cropping, pest management, business planning, marketing, sales and accounting. See koha.la/farmer for more information and to apply or call 887-6411.
       Although no previous farming experience is required, preference is given to applicants who have taken steps to become agricultural producers but would benefit from a comprehensive curriculum. The course includes classroom training, hands-on field days at The Kohala Center’s Demonstration Farm, visits to local farms and farm apprenticeship opportunities. Students who successfully complete the course and create viable farm and business plans may receive one-on-one technical assistance from the center’s Rural and Cooperative Business Development Services team to access start-up capital and/or leasable land.
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Yoga practitioners line up for class at Na`alehu Hongwanji.
Photo from Stephanie Pepper
NA`ALEHU HONGWANGI OFFERS YOGA tomorrow. Stephanie Pepper teaches classes in the Iyengar tradition on Mondays as well as Wednesdays from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. She uses props to help students achieve proper alignment safely, avoiding injury. All props are provided, and the first class is free. 
      Donations afterward are $10 for 10 classes for participants over 65 and $5 per class for those 65 and under.
      For more information, call 937-7940.

THE BEAUTY OF KA`U opens tomorrow at CU Hawai`i Federal Credit Union in Na`alehu. Hours for public viewing and voting are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. through Thursday, Nov. 5. Each day, the public may sign in and receive a ballot for their favorite entry. Each ballot, a numbered ticket, will also be entered into a drawing for door prizes to be held each hour, and the winner does not need to be present. Prizes are being donated by various Ka`u merchants.
      The overall winner, chosen by judges, will be featured on the cover of The Directory 2016 and receive $100 and an article inside The Directory.

Ka`u growers can learn about Korean Natural Farming Saturday.
KOREAN NATURAL FARMING comes to Ka`u this Saturday, Nov 14, rather than Nov. 7 as originally announced. Drake Weinert shares his knowledge during a free workshop from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. According to Weinert, the method improves soil quality and boosts nutrients using non-toxic materials farmers can find in their own homes. It can also help reduce costs while increasing long-term health of farms. 
      Sponsored by Ka`u Specialty Coffee, the event takes place at 96-2384 Wood Valley Road above Pahala. Go past Ka`u Coffee Mill. About five minutes later on the left there is a small gravel road. Go past the gravel road until on the left appear a big pasture with some little green and grey buildings at the bottom and a small blue house with white roof at the top of the hill.
      For more information, email malian@kauspecialtycoffee.com.

KA`U `OHANA BAND PERFORMS at Ocean View Swap meet at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 28. Holiday music selections feature something for everyone with beautiful, moving songs as well as fun and lighthearted tunes. The concert is free.


FOR AFFORDABLE COMPUTER HELP, call John Derry at 936-1872.

NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS for Retail Sales Associate: Full-Time, Competitive Wages, Medical & Dental Plans. Apply at Ka`u Coffee Mill. Call 928-0550 for an appointment.

See kaucalendar.com/KauCalendar_Nov2015.pdf.
See kaucalendar.com/Directory2015.swf
and kaucalendar.com/Directory2015.pdf.