Hawai'i State News

Tentative agreement reached on salary adjustments for educational assistants, vice principals

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A classroom whiteboard. Photo Courtesy: Pexels.com

The Hawai‘i State Department of Education and the Hawai‘i Government Employees Association have reached a tentative agreement to strengthen recruitment and retention efforts for critical positions supporting student achievement.

The proposal, which still needs to be ratified to take effect, would increase pay for educational assistants and vice principals in Hawai‘i public schools.

“This tentative agreement, pending ratification of our membership, signals to public workers across the state that this administration, unlike its predecessors, desires increased collaboration with public sector unions to make state government work better for the people of Hawai‘i,” said Randy Perreira, Hawai‘i Government Employees Association executive director.


The Department of Education employs 2,550 educational assistants statewide. There are currently 600 educational assistant vacancies.

The proposed salary adjustments would increase the annual salary for educational assistants by an average 8% over two years by moving educational assistants to a higher salary range each year for the next two years. The average base salary will increase from $35,425 to $40,611.

Hawai‘i State Department of Education vice principals, meanwhile, would be converted from their current 10-month status (aligned to the academic school year) to year-round employees in line with principals and Act 51 that was passed in 2004.


Vice principals support school principals with daily operations, provide instructional leadership and student support, and engage with families, community members and business partners to advance priorities for student learning.

The Hawai‘i State Department of Education employs 379 vice principals statewide. The agreement would increase the annual salary for vice principals by 20% — from an average of $96,912 to $116,292 in fiscal year 2024.

The tentative agreement will need to be ratified by affected members of the Hawai‘i Government Employees Association ’s unit 3 and unit 6, representing educational assistants and vice principals, respectively.


The total estimated cost to increase compensation for educational assistants and convert vice principals to 12-month employees is $13 million in fiscal 2024 and $20.5 million the following fiscal year. The figures cover salary and fringe for nearly 3,000 existing Hawai‘i State Department of Education employees and charter school employees.

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