Gov. Neil Abercrombie wasted no time in signing off on the new contract public schoolteachers ratified last night.
At a news conference this morning, the governor and officials with the state Department of Education and the Hawaii State Teachers Association made the four-year deal official. It now heads to the Legislature for funding approvals.
Abercrombie told reporters he believes the contract, which will tie teachers’ pay raises in part to student performance, should be celebrated as one of the most progressive contracts in the country.
Ninety-five percent of teachers voting voted to ratify the deal, which includes annual pay increases and reduced medical premiums for teachers, and ends a two-year labor dispute with the state.
The governor made a pledge to teachers that he and his administration will “dedicate ourselves to living up to everything that has been negotiated in this contract.”
Schools Superintendent Kathryn Matayoshi added that the Department of Education is committed to “making this the opportunity to improve our public education system through the support of our teachers.”