Jun 17, 2013

Longer School Day & Longer School Year Up Ahead for DC Public Schools Teachers & Students!

By Candi Peterson
Vote Davis Slate for WTU
 Liz Davis /Candi Peterson
WTU Can Be Better!

Earlier in March 2013, DC Public Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson announced to the Washington Examiner newspaper that she was seeking to implement a longer school day and a longer school year. According to a schools spokesperson, DCPS was not ready to release the details at that time since contract negotiations were ongoing with the Washington Teachers' Union (WTU).

On June 11, Confirmation of Chancellor Henderson's plans to lengthen the time DC students and teachers spend in school came when she announced to the City Council Round Table on Public Education, "A LONGER SCHOOL DAY and YEAR IN THE COMING YEAR, WILL SOON TO BE MADE PUBLIC." 

So it seems the details of Henderson's plans as well as information on teacher raises will be revealed in the upcoming Washington Teachers' Union Tentative Agreement (T.A.). It's a shame that WTU's President Saunders failed to mention in his Sunday, June 16 robo call to union members the longer school day/school year, but instead emphasized teacher raises.   The timing of the release of the WTU Tentative Agreement is no coincidence as the news of a longer school day and school year is not the kind of news teachers and school staff want to hear. Saunders knows better than anyone that this kind of news could propel some union members to cast their vote against the WTU Presidential incumbent.

Some union members believe that the Tentative Agreement will be released to teachers after the WTU Run Off Presidential election, which is currently underway.WTU Run Off ballots arrived in teachers' mailboxes at the end of last week.

Be on the look out for a Tentative Agreement. Let a word to the wise be your guide. Before you vote, read the agreement in its entirety, and ask for explanations of anything that you don't fully understand.   Remember the devil is in the details.

© Candi Peterson 2013


Anonymous said...

Let us not become “bamboozled” or “hoodwinked” this time colleagues. Remember in 2007, many people voted for the highlighted pay raise in the contract, only to find out that the school day had been extended. The arrival time changed from 8:30 am to 8:00 am and departure changed from 3:15 pm to 3:30 pm. Remember more recently when people voted again for a pay raise. The harsh reality was that people were really voting for the horrors of IMPACT and yearly excessing. Remember that there is no free money out there! A pay raise comes with stipulations. Please read the fine print! Of course we all would love to renovate our homes, get a luxury car or buy that new fly hand bag but at what cost? It’s not cute to have the latest Gucci handbag but be handed an excess letter a few months later! It’s not progress to have a nice new patio set but have to work well into July or until 4:30pm to never enjoy the patio! Please remember that the past has shown that extending the school day/year has no significant impact on the educational achievement of our students! Please read the contract, pray on it first, do whatever but please do not just think about the money!!! Money can be the root of all evil sometimes!

Anonymous said...

Saunders is no different than his predecessor George Parker.

Anonymous said...

So will the longer day and year happen regardless of what happens with the tentative agreement? It sounds as though Kaya is planning on making our days and year longer whether or not we vote for the agreement. Can you answer that Candi?

Candi Peterson said...

Anonymous @ 858 Henderson is promoting this concept. If you recall the school day has been lengthened in other teacher contracts over the years. Whether or not she plans to pursue this through other means is anybody's guess. I suspect Henderson believes teachers will vote for the longer day if a raise is involved.

Anonymous said...

How about a new evaluation system? Impact is a nightmare! I will be "impacted out" very shortly. It's time to EXPOSE people. Impact is not an evaluation system. DCPS should be ASHAMED. I pray each day that ME's and principals will come forward. Too many teachers have suffered. The WTU looks the other way.

anonymous said...

Lets not sale our souls again for a few dollars that we will pay back in taxes! In some cases for free babysitting services and the children will not get any smarter!

Anonymous said...

Lets not sell our souls again for a few dollars that we will pay back in taxes! In some cases for free babysitting services and the children will not get any smarter!