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Denver teachers reject offer, will strike Monday

DPS and teachers met for another round of negotiations Saturday afternoon but were unable to reach a deal. Teachers plan for a strike on Monday.

DENVER — The Denver teachers union rejected the latest proposal from the Denver Public School District Saturday night that would have averted the first strike in the state's largest school district in 25 years. 

That proposal would have added another $2.5 million to the $20.5 million previously offered to boost teacher salaries. The district said they would pay for that by cutting 150 central office jobs.

The district also vowed to eliminate performance based bonuses to central office administrators which would have boosted bonuses for teachers working in schools with high poverty rates.

It wasn't enough for teachers who will begin their strike first thing Monday morning. According to 9NEWS reporter Jordan Chavez, the two sides will come together again on Tuesday, after teachers hit the picket line.

The two sides met again Saturday after failing to reach an agreement during a public bargaining session Friday night.

At issue is an incentive-based pay system that teachers call unpredictable and unfair to experienced educators. Teachers have said they want more invested in base salaries.

Friday's negotiations came after the state of Colorado decided not to intervene in negotiations, saying it believed both the union and the district were very close to a resolution to their labor dispute.

When teachers strike on Monday, the district has said schools will remain open. however, this week it was announced that early childhood education classes would not be held.

DPS Superintendent Susana Cordova said due to the licensing requirements, training and background checks needed for those classes the district wouldn't be able to provide them during a strike.  

That leaves 4,714 students - 71 percent of which qualify for free and reduced price lunch - without promised childcare should teachers strike on Monday.  


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