Tuesday, January 15, 2019
More than 35 years.
I've been a classroom teacher in everything from kindergarten to sixth grade.
I've taught reading intervention.
I've been a literacy coach and an assistant principal.
I've worked in curriculum development at the central offices.
In all of those years, and in all of those jobs,
there is one thing I have never done.
I have never once gone on strike.
I've always said that I was there for my kids,
and that even if other teachers went out,
I would stay and teach
because that's what I do.
It seems like that's about to change.
The teachers in Denver have been negotiating with the district for over a year.
And they don't seem to be able to come to any kind of agreement.
The district says there is no more money.
And yet we have more supervisors and bosses and "partners"
than any other district in the state.
In the meantime, the younger teachers in my building
can't make a living wage.
Can't afford apartments anywhere in the city, let alone mortgages.
Can't pay their bills or pay back their student loans.
Work a ten hour school day, then wait tables at night.
Talk regularly about how much they could make in a different profession.
And how much easier it would be.
And I'm worried.
I am worried for my school.
I'm worried for my district.
I'm worried for my profession.
and so, for the first time in my career,
I may be going out on strike.