DCTA Responds to DPS’ Request that The State Intervene

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Today the DCTA (Denver Classroom Teachers Association) issued a response to Denver Public Schools’ request for state intervention after negotiations regarding wages failed. The release of the statement also marks the beginning of the 14 day limit on how long the state has to begin interventions. If the state does intervene, the strike could be postponed up to 180 days.

“Denver teachers believe state intervention in our negotiations with DPS would be futile,” DCTA President Henry Roman said in the response.

“DCTA certainly appreciates the time, resources and energy that state officials have dedicated to monitoring this labor dispute. But our officials need to fully appreciate we have studied the options for a new compensation agreement with DPS for five years, with very intense negotiations over the last 14 months,” Roman added. “Reopening negotiations will not be productive until DPS recognizes our need for a fair, predictable salary schedule and commits to bring more funding to the public bargaining table.”

Roman says that the relationship between the union and the district is in “a state of disrepair” and that state intervention will not be able to fix the problem. The DCTA cites the district’s lack of a transparent and predictable payment plan as the biggest issue on the table; teachers want a higher salary, plain and simple. The district, however, would prefer a plan based more largely on bonuses and incentives, which the union states a “[…]massive flight of good teachers from Denver classrooms to other districts with normal salary schedules.”

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