4,000 DC teachers could get a raise

A contract ratified by the Washington Teachers' Union could give DCPS teachers a 9 percent raise over a three-year period. (Thinkstock)
WASHINGTON — If a new contract under consideration by the D.C. Council this week is approved, more than 4,000 of the city’s public school teachers would be paid more.

The contract, which was ratified by the Washington Teachers’ Union in September, includes raises of 9 percent over a three-year period and must be approved by council members before it can take effect.

This would be the first contract for D.C. teachers in five years.

“I think that the council overwhelmingly supports the funding of the teachers’ contract, given that the last contract had expired several years ago,” said Council Chairman Phil Mendelson.

Mendelson said it would be on the council’s agenda Tuesday.

“While having gone five years without a contract failed to demonstrate the appreciation we have for our teachers, this contract fulfills our commitment to the teachers that we entrust with our children,” said Mayor Muriel Bowser. “We look to the D.C. Council to act swiftly.”

DCPS Chancellor Antwan Wilson added, “This contract is what our educators deserve.”

When the previous contract expired in 2012, former chancellor Kaya Henderson was in charge. Wilson took over as head of the school system in February.

The new contract includes a 4 percent retroactive pay raise for fiscal 2017, a 3 percent increase in fiscal 2018 and a 2 percent increase in fiscal 2019.

There was some concern that money for the raises would not be available if the council did not vote on the contract before the start of October, but Mendelson said that was not the case.

“Someone disseminated misinformation,” he said in a statement to WTOP. “There’s no issue with the money, other than that we have to approve legislation to make it happen. And there’s no issue with the timing of paychecks, as it takes the CFO several weeks to process the paperwork.”

According to city officials, DCPS has the highest first-year teacher salary in the country at $53,000.

Nick Iannelli

Nick Iannelli can be heard covering developing and breaking news stories on WTOP.

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