Aloha Waimalu Ohana!
As I mentioned in my December message, I had an opportunity to attend the National Career Academy Coalition Conference in Philadelphia in November. One of the things I came away with is that one of the most important things we can teach young people (and adults too!) is social awareness.
In short, social awareness is your perspective of others, and your ability to respect and show empathy toward others. We have such a wonderful opportunity to practice that here at Waimalu because we have such a diverse campus. We have students that come from many backgrounds and places. We have students and teachers who speak multiple languages, have lived in multiple places, and have multiple talents.
One source of pride here at Waimalu is that we are the home to the deaf and hard of hearing program for the Central and Leeward Oahu districts. In most cases, our deaf and hard of hearing students are in the same classrooms as the rest of our students. This benefits all of our students and teachers, as everyone works side by side with each other. It gives both our hearing and deaf students an opportunity to experience the perspectives of others, and teaches them to celebrate the diversity that exists at our school.
It is this diversity that makes Waimalu a very warm and welcoming school. Please take some time to talk to your child about the importance of appreciating others for their differences as well as their similarities. That is very much what makes our school a very special place.
Our Social Emotional Learning program, Choose Love, emphasizes what it takes to appreciate others. It takes courage to recognize that we are all different, but the same. Gratitude helps us to appreciate that diversity. Forgiveness helps us to move on when our differences get in the way of appreciating each other. And compassion provides us the energy to show others how much we appreciate them.
As always, if you have any concerns you would like to share with me, please stop by. If I am not available, please see our school secretary, Mrs. Kacie Higa. She will be happy to set up an appointment.
Glen Iwamoto, Principal