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Holy Family Catholic Academy Offers New Virtual Learning Option

August 17, 2020

Holy Family Catholic Academy (HFCA) is looking forward to welcoming its students back to campus for full-day, face-to-face instruction, starting on Monday, August 17th. This traditional learning model will have many of HFCA's students attending school in person--all day, every day--with enhanced health and safety measures.

Given the recent surge in COVID cases on Oahu, HFCA principal Celeste Akiu made the decision to offer another option to its families--a Virtual Learning Program. The new Virtual Learning Program is available for Kindergarten - 8th grade students, utilizing the same school year calendar. HFCA has made a huge investment in technology and is providing 1:1, school-issued iPads for all students in Kindergarten - 8th grade (both in-person and virtual). Curriculum for all students is digital and web-based, providing a seamless transition for student learning should there be a need to close the school for an extended period of time.

HFCA principal Celeste Akiu states, "Supporting our students and families is one of our top priorities. We recognize that the full-day, in-person, Monday-Friday model may not meet some of our families’ needs. We are pleased to announce that HFCA will be offering a Virtual Learning Model simultaneously with our full-day, in-person model for the 2020-2021 school year. As of today, we have 48 students and families choosing this model." With 260 students in grades K - 8 this school year, almost 20% of HFCA's students are enrolled in its Virtual Learning Program for the 1st semester.

HFCA has hired a dedicated Virtual Learning faculty member, Jocelyn Burch, to provide additional learning support for students in the Virtual Learning Program. Mrs. Burch will communicate with grade-level teachers and serve as a liaison between on-campus teachers, Virtual Learning students, and their parents.  Mrs. Burch will schedule all Google Meets, allowing the Virtual students to join their respective in-person classes, virtually, on a daily basis. Each Virtual student will be assigned to an on-campus homeroom teacher in their grade level. Mrs. Burch will hold weekly virtual check-in appointments with each of HFCA's Virtual students, to address any questions, needs or challenges. Mrs. Burch will also send weekly newsletters with additional resources to Virtual parents, as well as initiate check-in calls and emails, to help ensure HFCA's virtual students succeed in the program. Virtual students will be taught at the same pace as HFCA's in-person classes, and Virtual students will be assessed and graded according to the same class criteria and rubrics as in-person students.

Families that choose HFCA's Virtual Learning Program will need to commit to at least one full semester (August 5 - December 18, 2020). At the end of the first semester, parents will decide whether to have their child(ren) continue in the Virtual Learning Program for the second semester (January 25 - May 28, 2021)--or transition to the in-person, on-campus learning model.

HFCA has developed Distance Learning Behavior Expectations for its students in their Virtual Learning Program. These include being on time for all classes (tardies and absences will be tracked), wearing an HFCA school uniform, and being seated on a chair at a table or a desk. Students are not allowed to snack during virtual classes, and they are asked to set up their learning space away from any possible distractions (pets, toys, gadgets, etc.).

HFCA's Early Learning Center (preschool) is not offering a Virtual Learning Program at this time. The ELC began full-time, on-campus, in-person instruction on August 3rd for its preschool students age 2 years and 10 months through 4 years old. The ELC continues to accept applications and enroll new students.

It's not too late to apply for this school year.  Interested parents are encouraged to visit HFCA's website at www.hfcahawaii.org or contact the Registrar, Mrs. Luana DeSoto, at 808-423-9611 ext. 306 or via email at ldesoto@hfcahawaii.org. Prospective parents with any questions may contact HFCA's K-8 Principal, Ms. Celeste Akiu, at 808-423-9611 ext. 302 or via email at cakiu@hfcahwaii.org. Parents with preschool questions may contact Holy Family's Early Learning Center Director, Mr. Allen Akiona, Jr., at 808-421-1265 or via email at aakiona@hfcahawaii.org. HFCA accepts applications and enrolls new students year-round, based on space availability.

Holy Family Catholic Academy and Early Learning Center is a co-ed, parochial, private school for students in preschool through 8th grade.  Holy Family Catholic Academy is located off Nimitz Highway, near the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport. HFCA offers both Before and After-School Care Programs starting at 6:00am and ending at 5:30pm each school day.