Excellent attempt at spin, Mr. Pace. Jim Pace, President of the Hesperia Teacher's Assoc. (HTA) is quoted in the May 20 Hesperia Star as saying teachers are willing to make concessions to save their colleagues' jobs. He bases this statement on a recent HTA vote in which 47 teachers voted to save $2,000,000 by foregoing a move on the step and column of the pay scale, 59 teachers voted to save $600,000 by deferring a 1% pay raise, 243 voted to save only $300,000 by taking a day off without pay and 249 voted to do nothing at all. While it is true a bare majority voted to do something, what about the approximately 275 teachers who by not voting at all, de facto voted for none of the above. That is quite some PR spin.

By the way, Mr. Pace, how many teachers wrote in a vote for "All of the Above"? I know there were some. And why wasn't that one of the official choices? "All of the Above" would have saved all of the teacher's jobs and educational programs. Could it be HTA is not really interested in saving teacher's jobs? Perhaps HTA is actually more interested in the propaganda value that would result if the District were forced to lay off teachers. After all, in a couple of years everyone will remember the pink slipped teachers but no one will remember that by their inaction HTA was ultimately responsible.

I do believe teachers are willing to make concessions. Teachers as a group are generous, giving, compassionate people. I believe the vote was a result of the HTA executive council's inaccurate and poorly disseminated information. I know site reps who attended the meeting where the ballot was discussed, and where it was specifically announced that there was "no guarantee" that the concessions would be for only one year. This was not true, but the site reps believed it and relayed it to other teachers. Shame on you, Mr. Pace.

Mr. Pace, since you have magnanimously decided to recommend a new vote between "None of the Above" and the anemic "One Un-paid Day Off", can't you recommend a re-vote among all of the choices and include "All of the Above", but this time give out the correct information? Or, since you are convinced that the membership is willing to make concessions, remove "None of the Above" as one of the choices? Finally, send out written facts; don't rely only on poorly attended "Informational" meetings where verbal statements can be misinterpreted or later be denied. Give the teachers a real chance to save their colleagues jobs.