In January, we shared the priorities HSTA's Government Relations Committee planned to advocate for during the current Legislative session and on all levels of government.
Now, many of the bills we've been tracking in the Legislature have crossed over between the House and Senate.
In the coming weeks, we may be asking for your help to submit and deliver testimony. Each committee announces their agenda with just 48 hours notice, so expect to receive requests last-minute.
Please look for your top priorities and make sure you have a registered account with the Hawaii State Legislature in order to submit testimony.
See below for instructions, and stay tuned for updates as these bills move through the Legislature.
Related Story: Priorities for HSTA's Government Relations Committee in 2019
1. Public school funding
Update on March 22, 2019: According to a Star-Advertiser report, House Finance Chairwoman Sylvia Luke says she will not consider the measure: “Right now the Legislature should show the public that we have a good handle on accountability for the expenses, and I do not feel that the (Department of Education) has done enough to tell the Legislature that these are the ways that we’re using the funds for student achievement or for public school improvement.”
HSTA President Corey Rosenlee shared this message with our members: “We’re disappointed that the House of Representatives will not be able to vote on a measure that could properly fund Hawaii’s public education. Our schools remain in crisis. We need to have enough qualified teachers and proper facilities for our keiki, and comply with federal law when it comes to special education. We want to thank all of our teachers who contacted the Legislature and sent in testimony. As a union, we cannot be deterred. We will keep fighting to ensure our keiki get the schools they deserve.”
2. Teacher housing
3. National Board Certified Teachers
4. Charter school funding
5. Teacher representative on the Board of Education
6. School funding adequacy study
Related Story: Lawmakers propose new study to help effectively fund Hawaii public schools
7. Special education
8. Behavior analysis
9. Air conditioning for public schools
10. Suicide prevention
Related Story: Hawaii lawmakers address education on opening day of 2019 legislative session
Your action is essential as the Hawaii State Teachers Association continues to track education-related bills through the Legislature. Create an account on the Hawaii State Legislature's website here so you can be ready to submit testimony quickly.
During the Legislative session, we usually receive just 48 hours notice about committee hearings, leading to our urgent, last-minute testimony requests.
Click here for step-by-step instructions with visuals.
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