Teacher contract battle unfolding in Orange County

After a resounding "no" vote on a new proposed contract, Orange County teachers met to discuss the proposed budget with the Orange Count School Board.

While nothing was set in stone on Tuesday night, a tentative budget was passed. The chairwoman of the board, Teresa Jacobs, said it had to be passed in order to avoid loss of state funding.

"The resounding 'no' didn't surprise me.  You know, the teachers when they tell their individual stories, it's gut-wrenching. It really is, and it's not acceptable," Jacobs said.

Seventy-nine percent of teachers voted "no" on the contract, a first for the county. The contract would have provided teachers with a raise but also a hike in health insurance rates that would off set the raise.

"We ultimately need more support from the state." said Jacobs.

Matthew Hazel, a member on the Classroom Teachers Association board of directors said Monday's vote means they have to start negotiations at square one.

"As far as bargaining goes, bargaining does not happen at this meeting, bargaining happens at the bargaining table," he said. 

The next vote on the budget will be September 10.