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Posted at 5:00 AM ET, 04/14/2010

A contract that puts 'children and teachers first'

By washingtonpost.com editors

By George Parker
Washington

The tentative contract agreement reached between the Washington Teachers Union and the D.C. Public Schools should be celebrated as the start of something exciting for our students and teachers, not simply the end of a turbulent period [“Fenty, teachers union promote deal,” Metro, April 8]. While there has been much coverage of the financial terms, important provisions that will prove invaluable to raising student achievement have received little media attention.

Once the contract is ratified by WTU members and approved by the D.C. Council, teachers will get the tools, resources, quality professional development, and safe and orderly learning environments they need to ensure high-level learning. Teachers will have a greater voice in shaping the reform agenda; safeguards will protect them against arbitrary and capricious acts by those in authority; and there will be new checks and balances on staffing decisions, to ensure that these decisions are based on performance and not on a teacher’s relationship with his or her principal.

This agreement provides more opportunities for input and involvement by teachers and parents in decision-making. It is also a triumph for collective bargaining, because labor and management worked through their differences together and used negotiations as the vehicle to improve teaching and learning. This contract puts children and teachers first, not the chancellor or the union, and it should become the foundation for a new path toward improving student achievement across DCPS.

The writer is president of the Washington Teachers Union.

By washingtonpost.com editors  | April 14, 2010; 5:00 AM ET
Categories:  D.C., HotTopic, schools  | Tags:  D.C. teachers contract, George Parker, Michelle Rhee, Washington Teachers Union  
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Comments

Hey George did the WP editorial page set you up? How stupid can you be?

This last action on the part of Rhee has sealed your future in this town and among teachers.

Editorial Page

If you think running this article written by G. Parker (Union Clown and Bu-- Kisser) on the day after your girl, Rhee, has once again been exposed as a world-class liar will impress anyone, you are crazy.

Soon George Parker and Fenty will be gone. Rhee will move on to another city dumb enough to hire her and DC will be left in a divisive mess.

Also sending out the tentative agreement in a bounded, glossy and professionally printed booklet is an attempt to pass this piece of trash off as a done deal.

If the membership ratifies this agreement, they deserve what they get and it will not be a 20 percent pay increase. If you are willing to accept a pay raise based on the misery of others, what does that say about you? We all need money—but why sell your soul.

Rhee, Fenty and Parker should remember you or yours will reap what you sow.

I look forward to seeing George at my school.

Posted by: dccounselor72 | April 14, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps more raises could be given to the teachers if the cab drivers were able to bring money into the District like most cities do.

Posted by: starclimber9 | April 14, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

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