Updated: September 28, 2022
The Hawaiʻi State Department of Education has launched an ‘Ohana Help Desk providing technology support to public school students and their parents. Department officials call the self-service system the first comprehensive statewide service of its kind in the nation.
The help desk provides support for families experiencing issues with connectivity, access, device support and general internet technology support as more students utilize online and blended learning models.
The Department awarded a $1.7 million contract to Hawaiian Telcom to establish the help desk, which is available online at ohanahelpdesk.org, or via phone at 643-DESK (3375). The phone number is available Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Sundays from 4 to 8 p.m. The online service is available around the clock.
While some school districts provide tech support to families, HIDOE’s help desk is statewide and was designed with a higher level of support, with phone support in multiple languages, chat support and an online portal. The help desk will be able to provide phone support in languages most commonly spoken in Hawaiʻi households – English, Hawaiian, Ilokano, Tagalog, Chuukese and Marshallese.
“The ʻOhana Help Desk will be a tremendous resource for our parents and students who will be distance learning this school year to help resolve technical issues that may arise when students connect to the HIDOE network remotely using a variety of devices. We already provide a help desk service for our employees, and this is an extension of that effort,” Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto said. “Assisting families in their preferred language will ensure that all students can successfully connect with classrooms and virtual lessons.”