Raise Your Hand

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“Raise Your Hand” is a monthly editorial column written by high school students and their peers in collaboration with the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Its purpose is to provide a platform for youth voice, particularly DOE students. Since its start in March 2016, over 50 articles have been published in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.

We fervently believe that when youth are allowed to voice their opinions, amazing feats are accomplished. A young adult’s concerns are not only about school lunches, bullies, or the dress code. The younger generation is just as passionate and invested as their adult counterparts in issues facing our world. After all, they are our future leaders.

Blog Posts

"While money is a leading issue behind the teacher shortage, rallying support for our teachers in our schools and communities is a simple first step. So that if teaching is their dream, reality does not disappoint."

Without the strength of my mother’s “Yes,” I would never be where I am today. It’s a strength that requires vulnerability, both hers and mine, to live life against the dominant narrative that says that both our choices were the “wrong” one.


It is no secret that the Honolulu Police Department has seen its share of difficulties of corruption and rising anti- police sentiment nationwide. Here's what we can do to change that.

Many Americans may think the war in Ukraine does not involve them. However, this way of thinking is very flawed. Although the conflict may seem far away, it's still directly and personally affecting Americans – one of them being my dad.

Food insecurity isn't a thing of the past or an issue localized in developing nations; it's a rampant problem in the United States currently plaguing millions of children like Chloe.

As I rang up the next customer at Bath and Body Works, I asked how her day was going. She replied, “Hard and exhausting.” Concerned, I discovered her family, like so many others, was forced to temporarily relocate due to the Red Hill disaster.

It’s safe to say that many in Hawai’i are concerned about the future of our islands. Over 350 CTL high school students from across the state wrote a response to the prompt, “Tell a local lawmaker: What is the one thing that must change in order for you to picture yourself having a good future in Hawai’i?”Here’s some excerpts of what the next generation wants legislators to take action on now.

Imagine growing up in a corrupt country, facing assault without justice, being separated from your family with no hope of reunification, living in abject poverty, fearing for your life daily. This is the reality for many outside America’s borders, and just some of the reasons why they so desperately attempt to cross over into a new life.