H.B. NO.














relating to the board of education.





The legislature finds that the board of education has broad power over two hundred fifty-seven unique public schools in the State. The decisions of the board of education affect, either directly or indirectly, 180,409 students, as well as their parents, guardians, and teachers. Furthermore, the students, parents, teachers, and public at large are entitled to know the activities of the board of education and how the decisions are made at the time those decisions are debated and determined thus allowing for more community involvement on the decisions directly affecting them.

The legislature further finds that only six of the one hundred sixteen general and committee meetings held by the board of education in 2014 were after normal business hours. Five of the six meetings were community meetings, including one held in each of the counties. In 2015, only one general meeting was held after 5:00 p.m., on the island of Oahu. No community meetings specific to each of the counties, school complexes, or schools were held in 2015. Instead, these meetings are held in the morning or early afternoon, when most schools are in session, students and teachers are in class, and parents and the general public are working.

The legislature further finds that these community and general meetings, as well as other meetings pertaining to finance and infrastructure, auditing, and student achievement are paramount to how the students are educated and assessed. Additionally, the meetings determine how the students and teachers at each of the individual schools with a wide variety of needs benefit from moneys appropriated to the department of education for capital improvements and programs.

The legislature further finds that holding meetings after 5:00 p.m. would allow for more community participation and greater attendance by students, parents, teachers, and other members of the general public. The students and parents should have easy access to the open meetings during times that they could actually attend. This allows for the beneficiaries and active participants as well as the community at large to weigh in on critical issues affecting them.

The purpose of this Act is to require meetings of the board of education to be held at a time when students, teachers, parents, and members of the general public can attend.

SECTION 2. Section 302A-124, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"[[]302A-124[]] Board of education; organization; quorum; meetings. (a) The governor shall select a chairperson of the board; provided that the chairperson shall be selected from among the at-large members. The board shall select a vice chairperson from among its members, and the vice chairperson shall serve as interim chairperson in the event the chairperson's seat becomes vacant.

(b) A majority of all the voting members to which the board is entitled shall constitute a quorum to conduct business. At any time the board has fewer than five voting members, three voting members of the board shall constitute a quorum to conduct business and the concurrence of at least three voting members shall be necessary to make any action of the board valid.

(c) Notwithstanding chapter 92, from the convening of the legislature in regular session to adjournment sine die of each regular session, and during each special session of the legislature, the board may file any notice that specifies only legislation or legislation-related agenda items, no fewer than two calendar days before the meeting.

(d) Notwithstanding chapter 92, all meetings of the board, whether by the full board or a committee of the board, shall be held during the week between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m."

SECTION 3. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect on January 1, 2017.







Report Title:

Board of Education; Meetings; Community Participation.



Requires meetings of the board of education to be held at a time when students, teachers, parents, and members of the general public can attend.




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