Hawaii's Top Teachers
Saturday, June 15, 1996

Name: Debbie Hill
Age: 45
Position: Special education teacher
Education: Wilberforce University, Southern Connecticut State
Pastimes: Reading, music, computers

Making a special effort

Cindy Hull has seen her daughter Alison's schoolwork improve dramatically this year. And she gives credit to the 11-year-old's teacher, Debbie Hill.

The special education teacher's efforts aren't limited to her classroom at Hale Kula Elementary.

She sometimes drops off students' homework assignments at their homes. And she assigns her students projects that involve parents, requiring students to read to an adult for at least 15 minutes each evening and to themselves for another 15 minutes.

Hill "takes a great interest in her students and ... keeps in close contact with the parents, something I feel is very important," Hull said.

Hale Kula Principal Lloyd Uradomo said Hill "is highly visible on campus, even outside of her regular teaching duties."

Last year, after completing an intensive course in computers, Hill began passing on her newly acquired knowledge to other staff members, helping them with Internet access and multimedia programs. She is also a Parent-Teacher Association board representative. "I live at school," Hill said.

Alison said she really likes her teacher even though she sometimes assigns too much homework. Hull said she is glad Hill keeps her daughter busy because she believes that a good amount of homework is necessary for children to learn.

"Alison has shown great improvement this year and I firmly believe it's because of Miss Hill."

Stephen Lortz, Sp