Center on Disability Studies receives $1.1 million grant to expand innovative programs for Native Hawaiians

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Helen Au, (808) 956-4949
College of Education
Posted: Oct 5, 2006

HONOLULU — The Native Hawaiian education grant, "Hana Like: Hawaiian Youth Improve Education and Create Their Futures," developed by the UH Mānoa College of Education‘s Center on Disability Studies, was awarded $1.1 million over three years by the U.S. Department of Education.

Hana Like is one of nearly two dozen Native Hawaiian Education (NHE) programs on Oʻahu, Lanaʻi, Maui and the island of Hawaiʻi that have been selected to receive $11.6 million to develop, assist and expand innovative programs that provide supplemental services and address the educational needs of Native Hawaiian children and adults.

According to Principal Investigator JoAnn Yuen, Native Hawaiians are underrepresented in the teaching and computer/technology professions, and they are overrepresented in special education and in the justice system. Hana Like will implement programs in three school sites, including public schools, alternative programs, and after-school programs, to address these issues. Hawaiian youth across all levels of achievement will participate in activities that inspire teaching, interacting with children, learning about computers and preparing their futures.

"Hawaiian youth and children at risk will learn reading, writing, and math, and to enjoy learning," said Yuen. "Disproportionately large numbers of youth with disabilities are adjudicated, many of whom have low literacy skills and poor academic performance. Of those in detention, few successfully return to graduate from public school, and most are seriously compromised in transition to adulthood."

The three-year project will build on proven strategies in two areas—technology-based literacy learning, including math, for children and teens, and creative futures planning. These elements will be combined into novel packages, chosen by and designed for each site.

Hana Like will serve 3,000 participants, including 900 Hawaiians, as well as 360 students classified as having a disability, and an additional 180 at risk. Quantitative and qualitative data from assessment data, interviews with participants, family members, and personnel, and from direct observations, will be examined for explanations of process and outcomes. The program will be evaluated with both a Logic Model and Community Responsiveness, to enable continuous improvements and assure long-term benefits to Hawaiian education.

For more information, contact Dr. JoAnn Yuen, Center for Disability Studies, at 808-956-5462 or visit


The Center on Disability Studies (CDS) in the College of Education at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa is a University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents recognized center focused upon development and conduct of interdisciplinary education/training, research/demonstration and evaluation, and university and community service. For more information, visit

For more information, visit: