HONOLULU (KHON2) — More than a month and a half after the fires, nearly 400 West Maui students are still not back to school.
The Department of Education said it is still trying to make contact with the families of 88 Lahaina-area public school students.
They’ve managed to reach another 301 families but their enrollment and attendance status are not yet confirmed.
This out of around 3,000 K-12 students slated to attend one of the four Lahaina area schools before the August fires shuttered their campuses.
More than 600 high schoolers from Lahainaluna are now attending their school-within-a-school at Kihei’s new Kulanihakoi campus. Nearly 900 transferred to another public school and nearly 800 are attending online.
Charter and private schools took in 233 students.
“Some of them lost classmates, teachers, parents,” said Sen. Kurt Fevella. “Regardless of the fact of what’s happening. I’m not blaming the principal, not blaming you guys, but I just want to know are we taking extra precautions and having extra measures going in?”
“We do know that after students experience trauma, they do react in different ways,” said Deputy Superintendent Heidi Armstrong. “So it is very important for us to have a trauma-informed care model.”
The target return date remains the week of Monday, Oct. 16, following fall break, for Lahainaluna High and Intermediate and Princess Nāhiʻenaʻena Elementary schools.
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King Kamehameha III elementary students are slated to temporarily co-locate at Princess Nāhiʻenaʻena Elementary or at the planned West Maui site, the governor announced.