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Thursday, January 19, 2012
Full Text: HSTA Synopsis of Contract
By Selected News Articles @ 2:23 AM :: 7247 Views :: Energy, Environment

Okabe Outlines Teachers’ Options if Contract is Rejected

Aloha Colleague, January 18, 2012

Tomorrow’s vote will chart our course for the next several years. The HSTA Board believes that the contract before you is far better than what any other public sector union has achieved. While the contract delays our raises until next year, it does mean raises every year for the following four years.

That doesn’t mean that you have to ratify the contract. If a majority of our teachers vote “No”, we believe our options are the following: 1) Live with the last, best and final contract until it expires in 2013; 2) Strike to force the state to make us a better offer this year; 3) Continue with our legal strategy for as long as it takes.

As your president, I am prepared to lead you.


Wil Okabe

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Update Jan 18, 2012 -- FULL TEXT: HSTA 16 pg FAQ on CONTRACT

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The synopsis is below.  Here are a couple of clauses to note:

Effective upon ratification, teachers employed in DOE schools (non-charter) will have placement rights in the DOE if their school converts to a charter school.” -- This could reduce resistance to the Laupahoehoe Charter School Conversion from HSTA Teachers.

“Effective July 1, 2013, a new annual evaluation system will replace PEP-T. Effective July 1, 2013, the new salary schedule shall provide for annual step movements based on teacher’s annual overall performance evaluation.” – There is nothing in this synopsis which spells out what form the evaluation will take. For instance, if performance evaluation is based on a purely subjective measure such as direct observation of teachers instead of an objective measure such as test scores, then this “evaluation” proposal is just a guaranteed wage hike with a new medium for retaliation thrown in as a bonus.

Suddenly the reason for this January 5 article becomes obvious: Updated teacher observations key to improvement, report says

All of these contact clauses must be evaluated in light of the fact that the DoE is still the DoE and the HSTA is still the HSTA. The US DoE team is scheduled to arrive January 23 to evaluate whether the Hawaii DoE is going to keep its RTTT funds. The Feds are under immense nationwide pressure to make an example of Hawaii by rescinding the RTTT award.

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Dear Colleague, January 11, 2012

Thank you for your commitment in the classroom and patience as you wait for the details of the Tentative Agreement that was announced Friday evening.

I recognize that you have been greatly impacted by the implementation of the state’s Last, Best, and Final Offer (LBFO). Having visited schools statewide over the last six months, I have continually heard from teachers that they want their collective bargaining rights preserved and respect restored to our profession. Teachers’ feedback strengthened my resolve that the decision to challenge the state’s implementation of a LBFO at the Hawaii Labor Relations Board was correct. Our goal has always been to get the state back to the bargaining table.

An opportunity arose late last semester for us to enter into informal discussions with the state to seek a possible resolution. Since that time, several meetings occurred and together we were able to reach a Tentative Agreement in principle.

Early last week, we were encouraged by the progress we made with the state. As such, on Friday, January 6, 2012, Vice President Karolyn Mossman, Secretary-Treasurer Joan Lewis and I held an emergency meeting to share the Tentative Agreement with the HSTA Negotiations Committee and Board of Directors (teacher representatives from across the state). After careful review and discussion of the new agreement and the concepts it contained, your Board of Directors unanimously approved sending the Tentative Agreement out for a ratification vote by our membership.

On Friday night, we notified you of our Tentative Agreement and are committed to provide you detailed information on the settlement as soon as possible. Since that time, our team has been working feverishly to finalize the important details needed to be signed and in place before you can review and vote on a new contract. Though you may read or hear media speculation on the Tentative Agreement, please know that the only accurate information will come from HSTA.

The HSTA Board of Directors and I believe this is a good contract. The components and concepts are innovative and positive for our membership. Most importantly, through this Tentative Agreement, the State of Hawaii recognizes and honors teachers for their commitment to the profession.

A complete ratification summary document is forthcoming. Here is a brief synopsis of some of the important provisions the Tentative Agreement contains:

  • Contract Duration: July 1, 2011 – June 30, 2017 - Six (6) Year Contract with one (1) reopener to discuss possible future wage increases.
  • Effective June 30, 2013, the temporary five percent (5%) labor cost savings shall end and salary will be restored to the 2009 level.
  • Beginning July 1, 2013, teachers shall be moved to a new teacher salary schedule (10 & 12 month) which recognizes years of DOE service.
  • Effective July 1, 2013, a new annual evaluation system will replace PEP-T.
  • Effective July 1, 2013, the new salary schedule shall provide for annual step movements based on teacher’s annual overall performance evaluation.
  • Effective school year 2012-2013, a newly hired teacher shall serve six (6) semesters of probation. Upon earning tenure status, the teacher shall be eligible for a two–thousand-five-hundred dollar ($2,500) bonus.
  • Effective school year 2014-2015, the Employer shall pay Hawaii Teacher Standards Board (HTSB) license renewal fees.
  • Effective upon ratification, teachers employed in DOE schools (non-charter) will have placement rights in the DOE if their school converts to a charter school.
  • Effective upon ratification, maintain a forty-five (45) minute teacher preparation time and increase of personal leave days to six (6) days.
  • Effective upon ratification through June 2013, four (4) Days of Supplementary Time Off (STO).
  • No change on EUTF contribution split of 50%/50%.

We realize that members are anxiously waiting for more information. The state is currently auditing and double checking the numbers for accurate salary information for each teacher. Once all the numbers are authenticated, all members will be provided access to a detailed summary and the actual Tentative Agreement documents via the HSTA members’ only website.

We will also be holding an informational meeting on Oahu to thoroughly review, explain, and answer questions with members. In addition, the meeting will be streamed live on the web for neighbor island members and those who are unable to attend. While the dates for the meeting and ratification have not yet been set, please be assured you will be given adequate notice and time to review all documents prior to voting.

Again, thank you for your patience and stay connected with HSTA to ensure you receive the latest and most accurate information. If you would like to give HSTA feedback or have a specific question, please email with your name, school and question. We will compile the questions and develop a FAQ document.


Wil Okabe, HSTA President


PDF: Okabe Synopsys of Contract

CB: MORE HSTA Contract Details

LA Times: Updated teacher observations key to improvement, report says




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