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Master’s in Education Degree in Hawaii

Hawaii is in a state of crisis – teacher crisis, that is. But where there are challenges, there are opportunities, especially for teachers holding a master’s in education.

The severe teacher shortage in Hawaii has resulted in exceptional efforts to not just increase the number of teachers here, but to increase the quality of its teachers.

In fact, if you’ve got a master’s in education on your mind, Hawaii’s teacher shortage may mean tuition assistance to get the job done. The Hawaii State Teachers Association and the Hawaii State Board of Education are working together to improve opportunities for both new and existing educators, which include offering salary differentials in teacher shortage areas; offering salary differentials in high-needs areas and in high-needs school districts; recognizing years of service by increasing pay; and much more. For teachers and aspiring teachers with a master’s in education in mind, there are a number of scholarships available. For example, the Grow Our Own Initiative grants stipends that cover the cost of tuition for teachers who pursue a Master of Education in Teaching at the secondary level.

Keep reading to learn more about options to earn your master’s in education in Hawaii and how an online degree may provide you with the flexibility you need to earn your degree while satisfying your professional and personal responsibilities.

Earning Your Master’s in Education in Hawaii – Why Earn a Master’s?

A master’s in education is the ideal way to increase your earning power and professional opportunities while also achieving an Advanced License – the top tier of the state’s three-tier teacher licensing system. While a bachelor’s degree is the minimum educational requirement to teach in Hawaii, a master’s degree serves as the ideal pathway to the Advanced License – a ten-year renewable license. You can earn this license with a master’s degree, at least five years of teaching experience, and a valid teaching license in Hawaii or another jurisdiction (Option B).

Both in Hawaii and beyond, master’s in education programs are plentiful and designed to get you where you want to be. You’ll find exciting options to earn your master’s degree, whether you’re using it as a pathway to your initial teaching certification; to another endorsement to your current license; or to advanced study in areas like administration, research, or public policy. There is also a nice variety of specialized master’s in education programs that are designed for career changers who already hold a bachelor’s degree in another field and are looking to make a move to K-12 education.

Online Master of Education (MEd) and MAT Programs in Hawaii

A traditional, on-campus master of education may not meet your busy, professional life, or your geographic location may make attending on-campus courses either difficult or downright impossible. Fortunately, earning your master’s in education has never been more convenient, thanks to the many programs at this level offered either in a hybrid or fully online format.

The following public colleges and universities in Hawaii offer online master’s in education programs:

  • University of Hawaii at Manoa
  • University of Hawaii at Hilo

You’ll also find a nice selection of private schools in Hawaii that offer online master’s in education programs:

  • Hawaii Pacific University
  • Chaminade University of Honolulu
  • University of Phoenix – Hawaii

Jobs and Salary Benefits in Hawaii with a Master’s in Education Degree

According to the Hawaii Workforce Infonet, the number of teaching jobs in Hawaii are projected to increase by about 2.3% between 2018 and 2028. During this ten-year period ending in 2028, the state expects about 490 annual job openings among elementary school teachers and about 330 annual job openings among secondary education teachers due to a combination of new job growth, retirements, and natural job turnover.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that as of May 2020, elementary school teachers in Hawaii earn a median salary of $64,210, while secondary education teachers earn a median salary of $64,750.

At the top of the pay scale (75th – 90th percentile), which represents educators with advanced degrees like the online master’s in education and extensive experience, elementary school teachers earn about $76,650 – $85,310, while secondary education teachers earn about $78,270 – $88,840.

If you have a master’s degree in Hawaii, you’ll enjoy a higher salary than your bachelor’s prepared colleagues, in many cases. Teachers working for the Hawaii Public Schools earn higher salaries based on their education. As of the 2021-2022 school year, the starting salary for an educator with a bachelor’s degree and up to six years of experience earn $50,123, while those with the same amount of experience and a master’s degree or at least 30 credits of graduate credit earn a starting salary of $54,132.

May 2020 Bureau of Labor Statistics salary and job growth data for kindergarten and elementary school teachers, middle school teachers, and high school teachers. Figures represent national data, not school specific information. Conditions in your area may vary. Data accessed April 2021.

Job growth projections sourced from the Hawaii Workforce Infonet and reported in the U.S. Department of Labor-funded Long Term Occupational Projections (2018-2028) database – https://projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm.

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