Minneapolis teachers union agreement stipulates White teachers be laid off first, regardless of seniority

In a new piece of news, an agreement between the Minneapolis Teachers’ Union and the school district says white teachers regardless of their seniority will be put before teachers of color to end a two-week teacher strike last spring.

At the beginning of this school year if more than one of the licensed teachers on the site is a member of the underrepresented population, the district will exceed the next lowest senior teacher who is not a member of the underrepresented population.

Teacher oversupply is the process by which enrollment in a particular school is restricted to staff for funding or other reasons. Beech is a member of the underrepresented population.

The policies are intended to address past discrimination by district that the contracting states have adversely affected the recruitment of teachers under representation in the district compared to the respective labor market and community and resulting in decreased teacher diversity.

According to the Tribune, 50 teachers of color will lose their status due to cuts tied to enrollment losses, and the union says the policies will move the district closer to safe and stable schools.

The document states that students need teachers who look like them and to whom they can relate. This language gives us the ability to identify and address issues that are disproportionately high among teachers of color.

Band teacher and Minneapolis Federation of Teachers executive board member Edward Barlow told the Star Tribune that the agreement could be a national model for finding ways to retain teachers of color. When the diversity of teachers in the district represents the community and the labor market.

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