By Mark Ackerman
DENVER (CBS4)– Denver teachers want an increase in pay and are preparing to strike if negotiations don’t go their way.
The Denver Classroom Teachers Association, DCTA, is currently in negotiations with the district over ProComp, Denver’s incentive based pay-for-performance compensation system.
The current contract expires at midnight Wednesday. On the eve of the negotiations, teachers voted unanimously to call for strike preparations if a negotiation isn’t reached.
This is the first time Denver teachers have authorized a strike vote since the 1990s.
This week, a number of teachers from schools across the district have been taking part in protests to garner support and inform the community,
“Many DPS teachers cannot afford basic essentials, like health insurance, child care and a mortgage,” said DCTA president Henry Roman in a prepared statement. “We are working on a compensation plan for teachers that allows them to focus on their profession for the long term.”
The final negotiating session is taking place Wednesday at the Denver Public Schools Acoma campus. The talks are expected to last all day.
DPS released this statement to CBS4, “We are committed to reaching an agreement. We reached agreement in August on our general fund support for teachers, in which we gave our educators the largest raise of any teachers in the metro area. At stake now is the $30 million in Procomp dollars (about 1/10 of total teacher compensation) and we are looking forward to reaching an agreement with the DCTA. If no agreement is reached to change that system, we will continue with the current Procomp system to ensure that teachers continue to receive their Procomp payments.”