Pa'auilo Elementary & Intermediate School

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Principal's Message

December 8, 2017




We are quickly approaching the halfway point of the school year, I would like to express how thankful I am for this Pa‘auilo School ohana!


Thank you to all of the parents who participated in parent teacher conferences this year. If you didn’t have a chance to meet with your child’s teacher during our two scheduled parent conference days, please feel free to contact his/her teacher and set one up. By working together, we can accomplish so much more than we can do alone. We heard positive feedback about conferences but would like to get more feedback as we make decisions about next year. Please go to

to fill out a quick 2 question survey.


We have also had some changes to Pa‘auilo School staffing recently. We welcome Ms. Lethlean as a new teacher who will be teaching an elementary reading group, helping with 4th grade math and teaching middle school elective/RTI classes. Ms. Lethlean comes to us from Oregon and will be a great addition to our team. Please join me as we offer a warm Pa‘auilo welcome.


Research shows that students who move more learn more. As we work to meet the needs of our students, we are working on implementing various options for some students. Some of the furniture that we will be trying are wobble stools, standing desks, pedal desks, etc. When used appropriately these are intended to allow students to move so that they can concentrate without disrupting their peers. If you have any concerns about your child using any of these, please call me or send me a note indicating your concerns.


Lastly, I would like to ask your assistance in making sure that your children are here every day on time. We currently have 3% of our students who have already been absent for 15 or more days this school year and considered chronically absent. We have 7% with 10 or more absences and are in critical danger of becoming chronically absent. We also have another 25% who are on an alert list with 5- 9 absences this school year. Your cooperation in scheduling vacations and appointments outside the school day would be greatly appreciated. If a student leaves before 11:30am it is counted as an absence. Only by working together can we help all students be on the path to college and career readiness.


Thank you for making 2017 a memorable one here at Pa‘auilo!


I wish you all a wonderful holiday season!


Michelle Barber




November 6, 2017




October was a wonderful month. The Fall Break was rejuvenating for all. Upon our return, I was thrilled to recognize 99 students who had attended school 95% of the time for the 1st quarter.  They participated in an attendance celebration on October 20th. Of those 99 students, 40 of them had perfect attendance. Keep it up!!


I am also pleased to announce that our School Community Council held our first meeting of the year this month and will be meeting on the 2nd Monday of each month. If you are interested in learning attending our meetings, they are always open and we begin at 3:00 in the school conference room. Mahalo to our SCC members, Briana Hunt, Mary Beth Laychack, Shelby Adrian, Trista Walker, and Michael Shumate for their willingness to serve and help better our school and an extra mahalo to Briana for stepping up to be our chairperson this year!


We also held our first spirit week of the year. It was great to see so many students happy and participating in the various dress up days. We look forward to what our Student Council has planned for us next!


We are looking forward to Parent-teacher conferences on November 21-22. Please remember that there will be no school for students during the week of Nov 20-24. Other schools in the state will have school but our teachers have their Professional Development day on Nov 20 and our Honokaa Complex schools have written a waiver for the 2 full conference days rather than dismissing 1 hour early for up to 10 days. Our goal is to have 100% of our families participate in conferences this year. This kind of communication is vital to the team effort that it takes to provide a quality education to our students. Please remember that although this is the one time of year that conferences are formally scheduled, it is important to maintain open communication with your child’s teacher to find out how they are doing and how you can help to reinforce and work with your child at home.  You can also subscribe their class webpages to stay informed about the great things happening in each class.


If you need help signing up for our texting service, please contact us and we can help! It is one way of helping to keep families informed of events happening at school. You can also like us on FaceBook for daily updates of the great things happening here at Pa‘auilo School


One School, One Team, Making a Difference!!


Michelle Barber




October 2, 2017




I can’t believe that the first quarter is nearly over. I would like to recognize the hard work that has been happening here at Pa‘auilo. Students, teachers and staff have been doing whatever it takes to increase student achievement and building relationships. We have been trying to make a big effort to increase communication regarding the great things that are happening here at Pa‘auilo School. If you haven’t visited our school website, please visit We are also on FaceBook and have been posting pictures almost daily to keep families in the loop by sharing some of the activities that take place at Pa‘auilo School.


In our efforts to reward good attendance we will begin a new incentive with the PA‘AUILO lunch reward system when we begin quarter 2. I am a little bit concerned that 20% of our students are currently “off track” for attendance, which means that they already have 4 or more absences in the first quarter. Students who continue on that path will likely be “chronically absent” which is defined by the state DOE as absent for 15 or more days in a school year. We have struggled with this for at least the last 2 years and hope to break the trend. I encourage you to continue to help us in these efforts by ensuring that your children come to school on time everyday and especially in minimizing trips on school days.


We continue to stress safety in school and I would like to ask your help in ensuring the safety of all of our students before and after school. I have noticed that some students are arriving at school before 7:00am. Our parent handbook states that students should not be dropped off before 7:00am because we do not have campus supervision until that time. I am thrilled that they want to be at school early but am also concerned about them being on campus before there is supervision. The best plan would be to make sure that your children arrive at school between 7:00 and 7:55 so that we know that they are on time and supervision is adequate.


Some activities to look forward to next month are the awards assemblies on October 27, Blue and White Fair on October 28, and spirit week from October 24-31. If you know of anyone who would be willing to help out by providing some entertainment at the Blue and White Fair, please contact our PCNC, Donna Ito-Villafuerte. I hope that you all have a safe and restful Fall Break next week. Students return to school on Monday, October 12.


One School, One Team, Making a Difference!!


Michelle Barber



September 1, 2017


Aloha Parents/Guardians/Families of Pa‘auilo Elementary & Intermediate School,


Welcome back to a new school year at Pa‘auilo School! It is amazing to realize that we have been back at school for almost one month!  We have been off to a great start and I thank you all for that.


I am thrilled to announce some changes to staffing at Pa‘auilo School for those of you who haven’t met our new staff yet. I would like to welcome Felicia Friend Linton, Christopher Curry, Jessica Goldman, Allison King, Kalaekoa Gaspar, Sara Tomita, Sarah Brown, Raylene Crawford and Diane DeLuz to our Pa‘auilo ohana. Ms. Friend returns to her childhood elementary school as our vice principal. Mr. Curry comes to us from Hilo and will be our 5th grade teacher. Ms. Goldman comes to us from Alaska and will be our elementary special education teacher. Mrs. King comes to us from Georgia and will be our new preschool teacher. Mr. Gaspar is from Waimea and is our Data Processing User Support Technician. Ms. Tomita recently moved to Honokaa from Hilo and is a part time teacher and sub EA. Ms. Brown is our FoodCorps service member this year and is very excited to continue our progress with the school garden. Mrs. Crawford joined us as the meal tracker clerk. Ms. DeLuz is our new classroom cleaner. We also welcome Mr. Ayat back to Pa‘auilo as our middle school special education teacher.


We are making big efforts to ensure that families know what is going on at school. Some of the ways that we are doing that are: our monthly newsletters, updating our school website often at, updating our Pa‘auilo Elementary and Intermediate School Facebook page, using our School Connects automated phone calling system, using the messaging service so that parents get notifications of school events via text message, and utilizing the parent student portals for middle school parents and students to monitor their grades online. Please ask if you need help with any of these types of communication.


We continue to encourage you to take an active role in your child’s education. I believe that it is very important that we work together in order to provide your children with the quality education that I am confident they will receive during their years here at Pa‘auilo. We will continue to focus on student attendance as the last two years have had some startling results as far as the high number of students who have been absent for 15 or more days in a school year. The Board of Education is now looking at 10 absences as being chronically absent so we need to be more diligent. We will continue to need your support in making every effort to bring your child to school on time every day. Of course, if they are sick, they should stay home and we ask that you be sure to send a doctor’s note upon their return to school. I also ask that you please make every effort to schedule family trips during non-school days and/or during breaks. School calendars are available on our website and include state approved calendars for 2017-2021.


I am excited about continuing to serve as the principal of such a wonderful school community. I invite you to come and meet me whether you have questions or would just like to talk. My door is open. I look forward to meeting you and working with you as we strive for success at Pa‘auilo Elementary and Intermediate School.


In closing please continue to select Pa‘auilo #43 if you shop at KTA so that we can continue to promote excursions and provide incentives for our students.


One School, One Team, Making a Difference!!

Michelle Barber

Pa‘auilo Elementary and Intermediate School Principal