Denver teachers go on strike in latest wave of walkouts

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She also threatened to report striking immigrant teachers for deportation and vowed to keep the schools open with substitutes at double pay.

All 30 Denver recreation centers will open at 8 a.m. throughout the strike, with fully staffed after-school activities.

"By us doing this we finally became united", he said, marching with fellow teachers, members of other unions and students. Similar strikes and protests have occurred in Kentucky, Oklahoma and Arizona.

The Denver Classroom Teachers Association, which represents about 5,700 teachers and other school professionals, has been pushing the Colorado school system to invest more in base pay and to curtail the bonus structure.

The district has proposed raising starting teacher pay from $43,255 to $45,500 a year.

"They need us. They need our labor, they need our minds, they need our talents to really make it happen", lead union negotiator Rob Gould said.

The union says students deserve teachers who "stay in Denver for the entirety of their careers, and Denver educators deserve to afford to live in the communities they serve".

Teachers picket outside South High School.

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She said district officials reported that the school was calm by early afternoon.

However, Polis said the state could decide to intervene and suspend the strike for up to 180 days if the walkout drags on. I stand with Denver teachers.

Denver East High School students are seen jumping up and down, chanting and roaming the hallways in video captured by junior Elena Katz, obtained by The Denver Post Monday.

Many drivers honked in support and used their cellphones to capture the moment.

"It may well be that going a month without pay just isn't feasible for people who just had their savings come back" after the financial recession, Strunk said.

According to district data, that's about half of the teachers employed.

After failing to reach a deal with administrators on pay, teachers began picketing before the start of the school day.

The strike is the latest action in a wave of teacher activism since last spring, when teachers went on strike in West Virginia. Last month, Los Angeles teachers were out for six days. Denver Public School (DPS) spokeswoman Anna Alejo said many students "chose to walk out" and school leaders did not encourage students to leave, The Post reported.

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Lawmakers must find a way to fix conflicting laws that restrict state K-12 spending by hundreds of millions of dollars a year, the Democrat said, adding that school districts must do a better job of ensuring tax dollars go to classrooms and not administration. An additional 1,400 administrators are also ready to help out where needed at the schools.

Almost 2,100 teachers are expected to go on strike after DPS and Denver Classroom Teachers Association (DCTA) did not come to an agreement over increasing teacher base salaries. The district's preschool program will be shut down completely during the strike as there are no district staff to take care of them. This follows strikes by tens of thousands of educators previous year in Arizona, West Virginia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Washington state, and in the cities of Jersey City, New Jersey, and Pueblo, Colorado.

As is universally the case, the primary concern of Denver educators is low pay.

A last flurry of negotiating sessions between DPS and the DCTA failed to produce the sort of breakthrough that might have prevented a walkout.

In preparation for the strike, the district hired 300 new subs to pad its active roster of 1,200 subs. Teachers voted by 93 percent to strike on January 22.

Denver teachers went on strike Monday after failing to reach a deal with administrators on pay in the latest example of educator discontent, following a wave of walkouts over the past year.

The main issue teachers are striking over is a compensation system which they say favors giving out incentives over base pay, making it hard for the district to attract and retain qualified educators.

At a news conference, district Superintendent Susana Cordova said negotiations will resume on Tuesday, an announcement confirmed by the union.

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