"While we were pleased that HSTA finally presented a proposal, we were surprised and disappointed by its contents," stated Board of Education member Jim Williams. "We depend on and value our teaching professionals. The HSTA's proposal is not financially viable or prudent. By their actions -- delays providing a proposal, declining to make negotiations meetings a priority, making unrealistic financial demands and seeking to delay implementation of the new Educator Effectiveness System -- HSTA leaders do not appear to be moving urgently toward reaching an agreement."
HSTA President Wil Okabe responded with this statement:
"We are disheartened by the State's media comments. Our experience has been that when the State bargains in the media, we find ourselves farther apart. We will be a the bargaining impasse beginning February 1, so we believe these negotiations will be long and difficult. It comes down to what type of education system do we want, and are we willing to make the necessary investment? For the sake of our students we need to be honest on what the State is committed to."
Okabe says HSTA is analyzing the numbers the state has publicized to see whether its calculations are inflated or fair.
The state and HSTA return to negotiations on Wednesday, Jan. 30.