KS partners to host Early Childhood Education fairs on Maui

Jan. 14, 2019

Contributed by Ben Balberdi

More than 100 families turned out on Jan. 10 at the Velma McWayne Santos Community Center in Wailuku for the first of two Early Childhood Education fairs on Maui – a collaboration between Kamehameha Schools, PATCH, County of Maui Office of Early Learning, Tūtū & Me and Maui Family Support Services to address the increasing need for early childhood education in the region.   

Free and opened to the public, the event featured over 20 early learning service providers offering information on preschool programs, family-children interaction learning, developmental screening, financial aid, and health and wellness.

The second fair will be held on Jan. 15 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at Hannibal Tavares Community Center in Pukalani.

“Early learning provides the building blocks that result in lasting positive effects in academics, social and psychological behaviors, and developing young minds into industrious adults contributing to a thriving community,” said Venus Rosete-Medeiros, KS regional director for Maui, Moloka‘i and Lāna‘i. “In Maui County, the demand is high for early childhood education services and our goal with these fairs is to provide as much information as possible in one location so families are empowered to make decisions about their children’s early learning needs.”

According to a 2017 University of Hawai‘i report, on Maui, there is only one available seat for every 34 infants/toddlers (under age three) and only one available seat for every three preschoolers (ages three to five). The gap is even wider on Moloka‘i and Lāna‘i.

In addition to the early childhood education fairs, KS serves over 1,400 keiki annually through its 29 preschools statewide including three sites on Maui – Paukūkalo, Pukalani and Hāna. The Pauahi Keiki Scholars program provides further support through need-based scholarships for eligible keiki attending approved, non-KS preschools throughout Hawaiʻi.

To apply by the Jan. 31 deadline for KS preschools or the Pauahi Keiki Scholarships program, visit the preschool admissions page.