Hernández-Mats comes under scrutiny as candidate for Florida lieutenant governor

By the time, Gov. Charlie Crist named Karla Hernández-Mats as his running mate, Florida Republicans were already on the offensive. No surprise there.

MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, Fla. – By the time Florida gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist named Karla Hernández-Mats as his running mate, Florida Republicans were already on the offensive.

No surprise there.

Hernández-Mats, the President of United Teachers of Dade, served her first term as president from 2016 to 2019 and was elected for a second term.

“I am a teacher you know I am going to want to talk about the freedom to learn and the freedom to teach,” Hernández-Mats said on Sunday during This Week In South Florida.

Hernández-Mats punted about the union’s role in allowing salary steps for veteran teachers to be eliminated.

“State statute is the one that predicated what are our steps are going to be or not be. That was done away with at the state level,” said Isaac Castineira, a retired teacher.

Half true because there is a grandfather clause.

“Last month, this board violated state law and eliminated the grandfather schedule,” Castineira said.

That’s a 17-year Miami-Dade science teacher who just left the district.

“They had all the bargaining power in the world. They could have done something and they didn’t do anything.”

When asked why, despite criticizing state school funding levels, she did not push back when Miami-Dade’s school board was lowering local school taxing levels, Hernández-Mats said, “The millage of MDPS is set by state statute.”

Here is that statute: It is “the district school board that shall determine … the amounts necessary to be raised.”


About the Author:

Glenna Milberg joined Local 10 News in September 1999 to report on South Florida's top stories and community issues. She also serves as co-host on Local 10's public affairs broadcast, "This Week in South Florida."