Letter for Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Teleconferences save money, avoid risks

It has come to my attention that some of Kauai’s public school officials travel frequently to Honolulu — often weekly, and sometimes more than once a week. It is no longer necessary to conduct meetings this way, since technology has now made it possible to have productive meetings without everyone being in the same room.

Aside from the time and expense that can be saved by remote meetings, there is now another major reason for the Hawaii State Department of Education to make this change: it will greatly reduce the risk of our school officials becoming ill by contracting the coronavirus.

Just consider the impact if, after a big meeting, it is discovered that even one of the attendees had contact with someone who later showed symptoms of the virus. This risk can now be avoided. So, it’s time for Superintendent William Arakaki to make arrangements for future meetings to be held remotely.

Robert Fitzpatrick, Lihue

  1. Charlie Chimknee February 26, 2020 6:13 am Reply

    It would be much appreciated if someone would inform us how to technically set up teleconferencing so we can also avoid the time and expense and contagion of mainland travel and seminars.


    1. Kauaidoug February 27, 2020 9:39 am Reply

      Skype? Almost any smartphone has face to face capabilities.

  2. Makani B. Howard February 26, 2020 9:04 am Reply

    Totally agree! There is absolutely no reason he should be flying there for meetings that could easily be done via computer.

    What a complete waste of money.

    Wake up!

  3. a. kauaian February 26, 2020 2:21 pm Reply

    Mr. Fitzpatrick, excellent letter! You have succinctly identified three reasons that the practice of Kauai’s public school officials traveling to Honolulu be stopped. The waste of time and money, having been endured by taxpayers for so long, and now the frightening prospect of the COVID-19 outbreak hitting our island, are irrefutable arguments for immediately ending the existing travel programs. I encourage you to send your letter to the Hawaii Department of Education, the Governor, State Legislators, Mayor of Kauai, Teachers Union, plus anyone else who could bring about this change as soon as possible.

  4. manongindashadow0711 February 26, 2020 3:52 pm Reply

    But, but, “where else can they get manapua, etc?”
    Good point Mr Fitzpatrick!

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