State Officials Respond to Teachers’ Union
By Sonia Isotov
On the evening of August 6, 2011, the Hawai’i State Teachers Association (HSTA) sent a letter to Governor Neil Abercrombie. In reply today the governor, Schools Superintendent Kathy Matayoshi, and Board of Education Chairman Don Horner issued joint statements as follows:
“Since negotiations with Hawai’i State Teachers Association began last fall, we have been committed to finding a way forward. This included offering mediation, which was turned down by HSTA negotiators.
“Negotiations via the media are not productive. The HSTA filed its complaint with the Hawai’i Labor Relations Board (HLRB) and we respect that process. We continue to be open to mediation through HLRB.
“It should be made clear that mediation is different from arbitration. Arbitration, which we have never offered, is not included in Hawai’i’s statutory collective bargaining process with the HSTA.
“Our focus remains on supporting students, teachers, parents, principals and staff to move public education forward.”