Page 5 - MidWeek Kauai - June 23, 2021
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   Students Thriving In Catholic Schools’ System
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     It’s something that’s res- onated with Vannatta since childhood. She attended St. John the Baptist School in Kalihi (which closed last year), and continued on at her alma mater, Sacred Hearts Academy.
the ability to do well, but doing well doesn’t neces- sarily mean getting an A in everything,” says Vannatta, who herself has a master’s degree in special education from Seattle University. “I want my students to be successful, and I challenge them. That’s what makes me a hard teacher. I want them to do well, to think and chal- lenge themselves, to have integrity.”
 “That’s one of the perks,” she says of being able to work at a Catholic school. “I can practice my faith out
   Sin the open, and I was really evangelizing like I’ m sup- posed to do.”
By educating students to accept challenges, Van- natta and the rest of her Hawai‘i Catholic Schools colleagues give these young minds the tools to adapt to change in healthy, produc- tive ways. Furthermore, turning the state’s next generation of community leaders into go-getters and problem-solvers, especially after the past 18 months, is quite reassuring.
tudents under Hawai‘i Catholic Schools’ pur- view continually score
    above the national average in every single subject area, and 98% of its teens enroll in college after graduation. In addition, children can choose from an array of award-winning sports and arts programs, allowing their passions outside of scholas- tics to thrive.
Augustine Educational Foundation gifted Maryknoll School $1,500 for faculty development. Pictured are (from left) 2020-21 Hawai‘i Catholic Schools Teacher of the Year Mary Jane Vannatta, Shana Tong, Father EJ Resinto and Dr. Llewellyn Young.
     considerable learning loss,” explains Young. “Many Hawai‘i Catholic schools conducted worthwhile ser- vice projects, virtual field trips and successful virtual fundraisers, providing stu- dents with enriching service learning opportunities.”
Catholic Schools saw signif- icant increases in enrollment late into the 2020-21 school year and into the 2021-22 term.
were able to accomplish. “That was hard,” Vannat- ta admits. “I was not used to
   But, like Young and Van- natta reiterate, it’s not only about academics and extra- curriculars.
“The Hawai‘i Catholic school system fared in- credibly well throughout this pandemic, when others struggled and experienced
Each of the nearly 30 campuses was able to bal- ance in-person instruction (starting in August 2020) — taking care to adhere to strict safety guidelines — with online learning a dif- ficult feat not many other private and public schools
using technology like that. “I’m a dinosaur when it comes to that,” she adds with a laugh. “It was definitely a
“I think everyone has
So successful were these parochial schools in main- taining high academic stan- dards and student achieve- ment that overall, Hawai‘i
learning experience.”
See? Even in the midst
of a pandemic, the 2020-21 Hawai‘i Catholic Schools Teacher of the Year finds the silver lining and keeps on learning.
      Fill in the blank cells using numbers 1 to 9. Each number can appear only once in each row, column, and 3x3 block. Use logic and process of elimination to solve the puzzle. The difficulty level ranges from Bronze (easiest) to Silver to Gold (hardest). Answers are on page 11
    (Above) Alan Uyeoka of Aloha Kia presents Hawai‘i Catholic Schools’ 2020-21 Teacher of the Year Mary Jane Vannatta with keys to her new car during an award ceremony at Maryknoll School.
 70+ Years

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