With chants of “what would Cesar do?” teachers from the only unionized charter school in DC took to the streets earlier this week to protest what they say is irresponsible spending by the school. Chavez Prep Middle is paying millions of dollars to private consulting firm TenSquare at the same time core classroom positions are left unfilled. “We want to make sure our students are as best-served as possible,” said eighth-grade math teacher Do Lee. “But a lot of our money is going to TenSquare, and we don’t see the trickle-down effect.” Teachers are particularly angry that the school, which serves a large Hispanic student population, has failed to fill the teaching vacancy for a class in English as a second language. "This anti-worker agenda has no place in the District of Columbia where we strive for democracy and transparency and recognize the need for fairness in the workplace," Washington Teachers' Union president Liz Davis told Union City. "We have an additional responsibility to honor, not to trample upon, the good name of Cesar Chavez," she added. The teachers voted to unionize in June, and are in the midst of negotiating a new contract.
photo by Michael S. Williamson/The Washington Post