James B. Castle High CT

"I have always worked with students with disabilities since I was a teenager. I love my kids. It's fun and always changing!"


Special Education

Dona-Lei Yanagida has been a Special Educator (transitioned to TA Assistant Principal during CT Academy) for students with extensive support needs at James B. Castle High School for the past 14 years. Her teaching focus has been with students who have severe maladaptive behaviors. Besides being a Special Educator she is also the Navigator Academy Teacher Lead, member of the school’s Leadership team. Dona-Lei has been a cooperating teacher for teacher candidates for over 6 years for BYU, Chaminade and the University of Hawaii. Dona-Lei has earned her Bachelor of Art in Business Administration from the University of Hawaii West ‘Oahu and her Master’s in Special Education from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Message to Teacher Candidate

Aloha! Welcome to a great and most satisfying profession of teaching our future. You will be working with high school students who need intensive special education and have related services. Please bring your eagerness, desire and fun side during your teaching hours. I understand that coming into a new classroom environment can be both exciting and challenging. I want to assure you that my team and I are here to support you each way. I hope that your passion for education and commitment to our students’ success will make you a valuable addition to any school team that you will be working with in the near future.


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