After over a year of negotiations, teachers in Denver will go on-strike, starting Monday morning after failing to agree to the financial terms the Denver School Board had proposed.
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According to CNN, the two parties had been in negotiations for the past 14 months in a bid to overhaul the district's compensation system, which the union said, is linked to the city's teacher turnover rate.
The union claimed the unpredictability of teacher pay, and the annual fluctuation made it difficult to continue teaching, and - despite the district allegedly having empathy for the teachers, ultimately they failed to live up to their promise of averting a strike with a "transparent, competitive proposal," the association said in a statement.
“Faced with a smoke-and-mirrors proposal that continues to lack transparency and pushes for failed incentives for some over meaningful base salary for all, the DCTA strike will commence for the schools Denver students deserve.”
The superintendent of Denver Public Schools responded by saying she was disappointed that the teachers union broke off negotiations Saturday night.
In a statement, Superintendent Susana Cordova said: “I am extremely disappointed that the DCTA walked away from the table today instead of continuing to talk and work toward reaching an agreement. We presented an updated proposal that responds to what we heard from our teachers, aligns to our values of equity and retention, honors the ProComp ballot language, and significantly increases the base pay for all of our educators. Despite the union’s refusal to continue negotiating, we remain committed to working with the leadership of the DCTA to end this strike.”
This strike will be the first Denver teachers' strike since 1994, and will result in 5,000 pre-school classes being cancelled because of the lack of staff.
The district says schools will remain open during the strike, however, and classes will be staffed by administrators and substitute teachers.