Executive Director’s Letter to Members
Much has been said and written about the HSTA board of directors’ decision to conduct a re-vote of our State and NEA elections. The media and some angry members are having a field day casting aspersions on the members of your board; including the notion that the decision to re-vote was a way for the old guard to remain in power. This assertion could not be any further from the truth. In light of the continuing media coverage and threats of legal action against HSTA, I would like to share my perspective as the Executive Director.
I was present and a witness to the board meeting where the decision was made to call for a revote on May 16, 2015.
Your board members are teachers like you. Some are classroom teachers, some are resource teachers, some are nationally board certified, but all of them care about the profession of teaching and the professionals they represent. Each has high ethical standards and integrity. Now that the decision is made, it is so unfortunate that the integrity of these fine teachers is being called into question.
The board is charged with certifying the elections. Should the board not certify an election, the next question is whether they believe the election was improperly conducted or that errors were sufficient enough to reject the results. Under the HSTA Bylaws, rejecting the election is not a simple task; it requires a two thirds majority vote by the board to do so.
HSTA’s labor attorney was asked to attend the meeting in the event legal issues were raised and to assist the board in reviewing its options under the HSTA Bylaws, which dictate HSTA’s operating procedures. Our attorney was also tasked with assisting the president to ensure any decision made on the certification was made within the scope of the duties and responsibilities of the board members, and not on emotion.
Each board member acted with care and diligence in making a very difficult decision. It was not a decision they came into the Board meeting knowing they were going to make. After deliberating for approximately 12 hours and considering the information discussed, a decision was made because they could not ignore the irregularities brought to their attention. Like you they believe in what is fair and what is just. With those values in mind, each board member had the opportunity to express their views and vote their conscience. In the end, 21 of the 29 board members decided a re-vote of the elections was the right thing to do.
At the end of the day, we are educators and we are bound together by our work, common beliefs, and a deep commitment to the success of every child. I ask each of you to exercise your right to participate by voting on June 2, 2015 for your profession, your colleagues, and your students.
ELECTIONS FOR STATE OFFICES AND NEA OFFICES
Here’s how you can vote:
Read Voting Site Listing » (pdf)
Read Voting Sites by School » (pdf)