After 14 months of negotiations, the Denver Classroom Teachers Association (DCTA) and Denver Public Schools (DPS) failed to reach an agreement on a fair, competitive compensation system. As a result, an overwhelming 93 percent of DCTA members voted to approve a strike. DPS has left teachers in Denver no other choice.
Improving teacher pay is necessary to keep quality, experienced teachers in Denver classrooms. The DPS revolving door of teacher turnover, in which 31% of Denver teachers have only been in their school for three years or less, must stop. Denver students deserve to have teachers who stay in the district for the entirety of their career. DPS is not meeting the community’s expectations for fair teacher compensation and must commit to reaching an agreement on salary structure that values teachers.
While DPS has asked the state to intervene, DCTA members are preparing for Denver’s first teacher strike since 1994. We are asking the Governor not to intervene, but also respect his right to do so through the Department of Labor.
If a strike is to happen, DPS has publicly committed to keeping schools open and students safe. Understanding that it is ultimately a parent’s decision, DCTA encourages parents to send their children to school during the strike; students will not be seen as crossing a picket line if they attend school during the strike. We appreciate that 68 percent of the Denver community supports teachers taking to the picket lines.
Denver teachers are striking for their students. Achieving predictable base pay is necessary to keep experienced, high-quality teachers in Denver classrooms, which ultimately helps students . Otherwise, the district’s high turnover rate will continue to hinder student achievement.
Please join us in asking DPS to commit to reaching an agreement with teachers on salary structure that Keeps our Teachers in Denver.
Thank you for your support,
The Denver Classroom Teachers Association