National News

Hawaii Supreme Court rules against substitute, part-time teachers who alleged underpayments

Posted June 29

— The Hawaii Supreme Court unanimously ruled on Wednesday against some substitute teachers and part-time teachers who believe they were entitled to back wages or interest for alleged underpayments by the state, according to the state attorney general.

The 28,000 teachers had worked for the state between 2000 and 2012. The total amount of back wages and interest allegedly owed to them was more than $56 million in two class action lawsuits.

The ruling ends more than a decade of litigation. The state previously paid more than $14 million in back wages to substitute teachers. The state believed, however, that it paid part-time teachers everything they owed. The state also denied interest on the back wages already paid.

"The State and DOE appreciate the part-time teachers important contribution to the education of our youth. They can and should be paid for that contribution. But the State also has a duty to all citizens to ensure that part-time teachers are not paid more than they are owed," said Attorney General Doug Chin. "The Supreme Court of Hawaii today applied the appropriate laws under the circumstances and determined that the State properly paid part-time teachers the full amount they were owed. The Court also affirmed that no interest is owed."

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