Another 'hopeful' sign in teacher talks?
It didn't take long for the new year's first word of yet another breakthrough in contract talks between DCPS and the Washington Teachers' Union (WTU). Hopeful proclamations about a deal just around the corner have been a part of the negotiations since they began in late 2007, when Joe Gibbs was coaching the Redskins and voters in Iowa were quizzing Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) about his "Muslim background."
Last we heard, talks had been shut down by legal and political fallout over Chancellor Michelle A. Rhee's October 2 layoffs of 266 teachers and staff. But District teachers, who've been working without a raise for more than two years, reported a mailing Monday from WTU president George Parker announcing that a New Years Eve bargaining session had created new cause of optimism.
"WTU had a very productive meeting last Thursday with the mediator and DCPS," Parker wrote. "I am hopeful that the WTU negotiations team and DCPS will reach a tentative agreement (TA) in the next 30 days. Once a TA is reached, members will have ample opportunities to review the agreement and to vote on the agreement."
No other details were available. Parker did not return a phone message Monday night.
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January 5, 2010; 9:25 AM ET
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