Lunalilo Elementary CT

Native Hawaiian female with long dark hair

"I continue to teach special education because it's the first job in all my years of working that I actually, truly love despite the challenges. It's also because I love building relationships and connecting with my students and seeing them thrive and grow."


Special Education

Pamela Kanekoa, MEd is a K-5 Special Education Teacher at Lunalilo Elementary in Honolulu where she teaches second graders with extensive support needs in a fully self-contained classroom. Prior to joining Lunalilo, Pamela taught children with special needs in both resource and inclusion settings. Her love of co-teaching began at Waikoloa School on Hawai’i Island where she was a team teacher for three years. In 2018, Pamela presented at the West Hawai’i Education Summit on Co-Taught Classrooms.  Having been the only Native Hawaiian special educator at each of the schools where she has taught, Pamela would love to see more Native Hawaiians join the profession. To that end, she has participated in UHM recruitment and retention efforts, including a Seed Grant to explore recruitment and retention of Native Hawaiians, a statewide recruitment radio campaign, and the SPEDucator Project.  Pamela received a BA in Political Science from the University of Southern California and an MEd in Special Education from the University of Hawai’i.

Message to Teacher Candidate

Aloha & welcome to Lunalilo Elementary!

Do you feel that?  It’s the sensation that you are about to embark upon something new.

I am excited to witness your burgeoning career in special education and am honored to be part of your evolving and fascinating journey.  I am here to support and guide you, field your questions, and cheer you on as you blossom into the beautiful educator I know you will become!

Teaching is life-changing and not unlike my first trip to Venice, Italy, where despite months of research and preparation, I still got lost. Repeatedly and immeasurably lost. But in getting lost, I eventually embraced the unfamiliar and sought the joy of my surroundings. When I did, what I saw was unforgettable.

I wish you the same life-altering journey!

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