Denver teachers to strike after contract talks fail
DENVER — Denver teachers are planning to strike Monday for the first time in 25 years after failed negotiations with the school district over base pay.
The teachers union and Denver Public Schools met Saturday in an attempt to reach a new contract after more than a year of negotiations, but both sides left disappointed.
The Denver Classroom Teachers Association released a statement after the meeting saying the district’s proposal lacks transparency and “pushes for failed incentives for some over meaningful base salary for all.”
“We will strike Monday for our students and for our profession, and perhaps then DPS will get the message and return to the bargaining table with a serious proposal aimed at solving the teacher turnover crisis in Denver,” said Henry Roman, president of the teachers union that represents about 5,600 educators in 207 schools.
Meanwhile, Superintendent Susana Cordova said she was “extremely disappointed” that the union walked away from the table instead of continuing to work toward an agreement.
“We presented an updated proposal that responds to what we heard from our teachers, aligns to our values of equity and retention ... and significantly increases the base pay for all of our educators,” Cordova said.
Teachers plan to picket around the city beginning Monday as the district of about 90,000 students tries to keep schools open by staffing them with administrators and substitutes.
The two sides disagree about pay increases and bonuses for teachers in high-poverty schools and other schools that the district considers a priority. Teachers want lower bonuses to free up money for better overall salaries, while administrators say the bonuses are necessary to boost the academic performance of poor and minority students.