DENVER (CBS4)– Teachers in Denver are seemingly optimistic as strike negotiations continue on Wednesday. Clapping and snapping could be heard along with some cheers, coming from the negotiations on Wednesday morning.
Teachers hit the picket lines in the third day of the teachers strike in Denver. Picketing teachers were congregating outside of Denver Public Schools and also spread their message to drivers during the morning commute on Interstate 25 overpasses at Hampden Avenue and Downing Street.
During the negotiations, DPS leaders explained the changes in their most recent proposal to the Denver Classroom Teachers Association that were met with cheering and clapping from teachers.
Teachers say they’re committed to the strike until they get the deal they want.
“We’re all exhausted but we’re not defeated. We’re still fighting for the contract that we feel is best for our students,” said math teacher Aaron Lowenkron.
At 1 p.m. teachers, students and parents gathered in Civic Center Park for a rally. At 2 p.m. they were expected to march to DPS superintendent Susana Cordova’s office to deliver Valentine’s Day cards.
While both sides continue to make progress, there is more work to be done. Negotiations were expected to continue Wednesday afternoon on incentives, which is expected to be another challenging hurdle in the discussions.
Members of the Denver Classroom Teachers Association voted Jan. 22 to strike. The State of Colorado announced it would not intervene on Feb. 6. That cleared the way for teachers to begin striking Monday.
The disagreements center on 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. The district says the bonuses are key to boosting the academic performance of poor and minority students.