Castle Colleagues Program
The Castle Colleagues Program housed at Chaminade University gives site directors a highly practical array of management skills, tools, sources and information. Participants meet in a series of three intensive retreats (usually 3-4 days) on weekdays and weekends. The program is organized to give participants access to peers and resource people they can contact, long after the official course ends.
Session leaders include a wide variety of cross-sector resource people from other Hawai’i colleges, as well as foundation trustees, accountants, applied computer and communication experts, and experts within the early childhood field. Castle Colleague alumna, Wendy Stone, teaches in the program as well as advises on course content and other issues. Stone also heads the statewide directors’ association, Kia’i ka’ike, which was founded by graduates of the Castle Colleagues program. This association offers ongoing support for directors, helping them become more influential in their field.
“To move system change, we need better equipped leaders from within the system,” said Al Castle. “Castle Colleagues helps us to affect more children by providing the school directors [with] tools to improve their school’s performance, while acquiring some of the advocacy and public awareness skills to move our early education system forward.”
Castle said that although the course content is strong, it’s the “people connections” that are most important. “The 120 graduates statewide have formed their own alumnae network, and have broken through the barriers to communicating with one another.”
Tips for Peer Learning Programs
Castle Teacher Resource Activity Center
The Castle Teacher Resource Activity Center (C-TRAC) at Chaminade University is to serve as a resource for the local educational community, providing pre-service and in-service teachers with professional development workshops, equipment and supplies to create classroom materials, and professional library with current books and videos. An extension of the Castle Curriculum Resource Center, C-TRAC is funded by a grant from the Samuel N. and Mary Castle Foundation and Chaminade University. The facility is housed in the Education Building on the Chaminade University campus.