Hawaii is one of the worst places in the country to work if you’re a teacher, according to a new study from WalletHub, a personal finance social network.

Overall, the Aloha State ranked fifth worst, according to WalletHub’s analysis of 18 metrics including topics such as salary, demographics, student-to-teacher ratio and commute time.


Hawaii’s worst scores — lists on which it ranked 51st — were for “Average Starting Salaries” and “Median Annual Salaries.” Both categories are adjusted for cost of living.

For Hawaii teachers, the starting salary (for those with a bachelor and training in a teacher education program) is $45,157. The median salary is $55,319.

In terms of overall rankings, Wyoming got the best score, while North Carolina fared the worst.

WalletHub conducted the study as a tribute to World Teachers Day, which is Oct. 5.

“Most educators don’t pursue their profession for the money,” the WalletHub post says. “That’s a no-brainer these days. But that also doesn’t justify low pay, especially for a profession that makes such a profound difference in young people’s lives. And the sad reality is this: Many teachers are shortchanged with salaries that fail to keep up with inflation. Meanwhile, their workloads have grown with heightened demand from the law to elicit better student performance.”

Nationally, about a fifth of new public school teachers leave their professions before the end of their first year, according to WalletHub.

Civil Beat reported last September that 55 percent of new Hawaii teachers leave the profession within their first five years on the job.


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