After months of negotiations, the Denver Classroom Teachers Association (DCTA) and Denver Public Schools (DPS) earlier today united behind a generous new five-year collective bargaining agreement for DPS teachers, replacing the previous master agreement that expired at midnight.
The new agreement includes several major revision areas, including strong social and emotional supports for students, and the most generous compensation offer in the metro area for teachers:
- Commitment to the Whole Child: Agreeing that students can’t succeed if they come to school hungry, disengaged or distracted, DCTA and DPS will launch a joint Whole Child task force to review current and best practices, policies and recommendations for future improvements around the whole child.
- Compensation: The new contract includes a more than 5% increase in teacher compensation this year. All teachers will receive $1,400 as an increase to their base pay in 2017-18, and Title I teachers who do not currently receive the Pro Comp incentive (whether currently in Pro Comp or not) will receive $1,500 a year. In addition, beginning next year, teachers will see an increased subsidy of $1,200 a year if they enroll in medical plans with children.
- Teacher Supports: The new contract demonstrates DCTA’s and DPS’s joint commitment to providing the strongest teacher supports in the metro area. The new contract adds an additional planning day beginning in the 2018-19 school year and protects the 10 minutes before the start and at the end of the school day from being counted as planning time.
- In addition, together, DCTA and DPS will create a joint collaborative committee empowered to review and oversee ongoing improvements to the growth and performance system for teachers, Leading Effective Academic Practice (LEAP). The contract also broadens the role of school leadership teams to collaborate on school professional development, and learning and observation cycles.
The new contract will take effect if and when it is approved by the DPS Board of Education and DCTA membership.
DPS Superintendent Tom Boasberg said, “We believe that we are a stronger district — one that can better recruit and retain teachers, and better educate our kids — when DPS and DCTA are united in addressing the challenges you, our educators, face. We remain focused on supporting our educators and our students, and appreciate DCTA’s shared commitment to our vision that Every Child Succeeds.”
DCTA President Henry Roman said, “Thanks to the strength of DPS parents, teachers and SSPs, we were able to get to an agreement that furthers our commitment to creating the schools Denver students deserve. Denver teachers and SSPs are some of the most committed and talented professionals in the nation, and it’s truly an honor to work with them. We look forward to further collaboration with the district on these important issues.”