Why Give a Pulse?


NHEC and Grantee Programs in Data Dialogue towards Data-Driven Advocacy

Just as a patient’s heart rate serves as a crucial indicator of their overall health, the pulse of a community reflects the priorities and focus areas of education.

The Native Hawaiian Education Council (NHEC) deeply values its mutually beneficial and inclusive relationships with our community and grantee programs. Without these relationships, data might just be data.

These key relationships help us see beyond the data. Data dialogue conversations draw us to see the deeper stories, knowledge growth, and education as living systems in our community pulse.

This past year, NHEC held two grantee gatherings for 2020 Native Hawaiian Education Program grantees to collaborate on a portfolio-level logic model and ground-truth aggregated data we have been gathering about their programs for the past two and half years. Our findings show a majority of 2020 grantee programs serve at-promise youth showing a commitment to serving these vulnerable populations. Further, our conversations reaffirmed the importance of trauma-informed care and social-emotional learning has been underlined as priority funding areas for the U.S. Department of Education’s competitive grant.

Supporting At-Promise Youth

At-promise youth in Native Hawaiian communities face unique challenges that hinder their educational progress. Recognizing this, NHEC data dialogues have shed light on the commendable efforts of grantee programs to address these issues. By focusing on the needs of at-promise youth, these programs are working to provide them with the support and resources they may or may not get from in-school programs that they require to thrive academically, emotionally, and culturally.

Reaffirming Trauma-Informed Care

One significant finding from the data dialogues is the emphasis on trauma-informed care as a priority funding area. Native Hawaiian communities have long endured historical trauma and cultural oppression, resulting in adverse experiences that impact their wellbeing and educational outcomes. Grantee programs are actively integrating trauma-informed practices into their strategies and, emerging from the pandemic, seek increased support to address our most vulnerable population proactively.

Elevating Social-Emotional Learning

Social-emotional learning (SEL) is another key focus area for which NHEC has maintained a consistent advocacy push since 2017. Our council and grantee data dialogues have highlighted the significance of SEL as a vital component of education with values in alignment with Nā Hopena Aʻo (HĀ) BOE Policy E-3. With community and grantee support and compelling data collected by NHEC, we will continue to advocate for SEL as a priority funding area for the NHEP federal grant.

We are grateful for the collaborative effort between NHEC and grantee programs in helping to benchmark our data with community pulse and allowing us to tell our collective stories of impact for Native Hawaiian Education programs.