Jerico Jaramillo

  • Island: Lanai
  • District: Maui
  • Class: English Language Arts and Writing Workshops
  • Years of Teaching: 11
  • Field/Office: Lana’i High and Elementary School
  • Complex Area: Maui
  • Home Town: Ilocos Norte, Philippines
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Hawaii Department of Education greatest strength comes within the process of
how it tailored educational programs for teachers and learners. Everything is grounded
on principles that promote effective, efficient, quality, and life-long education for all the
learners. At the same time, instructional designs were designed inclusive to all types of
learners. Aside from these, there are also programs that provide assistance even
beyond the four corners of the classroom such as community engagement and other
extracurricular activities that can mold learners holistically and expose them to real-
world situations. In terms of teacher support, Hawaii DOE provides various professional
development training that enhance and retool teachers with strategies responsive to the
needs of the 21st century diverse learners. In HDOE everybody and everyone grows

The Hawaii Department of Education’s greatest strength is the huge improvements they have been making in the past several years.

The Maui-DOE Canoe Complex is a unique complex among others complexes in
the state of Hawaii, it consists of different schools in Hana, Lahainaluna, Lanai and
Molokai. As a complex, MAUI-DOE Canoe is very effective in ensuring that all
programs of the Hawaii DOE are being implemented and achieved successfully. Aside
from this, this complex highlights the value of culture and community and brings it inside
every classroom so that learners will have the sense of belongingness and identity as
they strive for global competitiveness. In Lanai High and Elementary where I belong, our Lana’i High and Elementary School
school provides a welcoming and positive atmosphere for all the learners, parents,
teachers, and the community in general. It also promotes a safe, gender sensitive,
culture-based, and motivating environment for everyone. It also highlights a school-wide
behavior expectation called TORCH which is an acronym for Tenacious, Observant,
Respectful, Compassionate, and Honorable. Everybody in Lanai High and Elementary
School is expected to project these behaviors and at the same time inspire others in the
community to be the same. Furthermore, the school also provides programs that
prepare students for higher education.

What are some fun activities that individuals enjoy doing outside school hours within the COMPLEX AREA that you represent?

Life in Lanai is characterized by a tranquil pace, a harmonious blend of cultural
richness, and a deep connection with nature. The island’s small population fosters a
strong sense of community where aloha spirit thrives. Locals exude warmth and
hospitality, welcoming visitors with open arms, making you feel like a part of their
extended family. Around 8.2 miles away from the Lana’i DOLE park, one of the island’s jewels is
Hulopoe Bay, a pristine marine preserve boasting crystal-clear waters and vibrant coral
reefs. During free time especially during weekends, this bay area is a perfect getaway
for everybody who wants to have picnics, and day or an overnight camp.
Nature enthusiasts like me can also find solace in Lanai’s diverse landscapes.
During my free time in the afternoon after school, I love to have a walk along the scenic
roads of the city where a parade of pine trees can be seen on both sides. In this activity,
I can enjoy the cold air of the island with a scene of its verdant grounds and forests
while reminiscing its historical past of being the largest DOLE Pineapple plantation in
the world. Furthermore, for an animal lover like me, various animals can also be seen on
the island. In the apartment where I am staying I can see the view of the ranch where
horses and donkeys can be seen running around. While on the way to Hulopoe, seeing
wild turkeys and deers is very common. But what I love the most here is visiting the
Lana’i Cat sanctuary in Kaupili Road where it’s free to enter and pet more than 700
abandoned and rescued cats. During my first month on the island, I was very lucky to explore its rich cultural heritage. A local from the island took me to the Shipwreck Beach located on the
northern side of the island. Near that area, Petroglyphs can be found. Petroglyphs are
primitive renderings depicting people, animals, canoes and other objects carved onto Lana’i High and Elementary School the surface of rocks by the first wave of Polynesian settlers. It was an amazing experience and learning for me. Living in Lanai is an opportunity to embrace a simpler, more meaningful way of life—a life attuned to the rhythm of nature and the spirit of aloha. The island’s tranquility and beauty serve as a constant reminder of the importance of preserving the
environment and cherishing the moments spent in its embrace.

What do you enjoy most about the students you teach in Hawaii?

Students here in Hawaii are diverse and have different potentials. What I like
about them is that even though I am just new in the system, I did not feel that I am
different from them and to me, they are not different from my students back home. In
the school where I am teaching, students are really considered as TORCH which is an
acronym for Tenacious, Observant, Respectful, Compassionate, and Honorable.

What do YOU enjoy doing in your free time while in Hawaii?

During my free time in Hawaii, I love to go and visit other islands because one of
my goals coming here is to witness all the beauty of this paradise by visiting all its
islands. As of now, I have been to Honolulu, Maui, and Big Island. Whenever I visit
other islands, I usually go around and take pictures whenever I can. But I also don’t
forget to go shopping because we don’t have big stores in Lanai.

What’s YOUR favorite local food on your island? How would you describe the food?

Beyond its natural splendor, Lanai preserves its cultural heritage with reverence. The
quaint town of Lanai City embodies an old-world charm, adorned with plantation-era
buildings that speak of its historical roots. Visitors and residents alike relish the local
cuisine, infused with flavors unique to Hawaii, showcasing fresh seafood, tropical fruits,
and traditional delicacies. Since the island is blessed with seafood, some of my favorite
cuisines are fried fish and Poke which is a salad of cubed raw fish—traditionally ahi
(yellowfin tuna) but also made with salmon, tofu, or even watermelon or
avocado—marinated in sesame oil and soy sauce. Food here in Lanai or Hawaii in
general is not far different from the food in the Philippines. I can taste home here in
Lana’i Hawaii.

What’s your favorite place to eat on your island? What kind of food is it?

Being a small island, we literally have very few places to eat ready cooked food,
probably just around 4 stalls located in the city proper. Among these, my favorite is the
Ganotisi’s Pacific Rim Cuisine which offers prepared Filipino as well as Hawaiian
dishes. My most favorite food to eat here is their classic spicy chicken sandwich with
fries paired with fruity refreshments.