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FAQ's

Who does the WTU represent? Do you represent educators in public charter schools?

The WTU is the collective bargaining unit for educators in DC Public Schools. Educators in other LEAs (ie, public charter schools) located in the District of Columbia are not eligible for WTU membership.


How can I become an WTU member?

It’s simple. Open our Membership Guide then log-in to PeopleSoft at https://ess.dc.gov and complete the steps to join the WTU.


How do I enroll as a retired member or renew an existing retired membership?

Members of the WTU Retirees Union are eligible for a range of benefits, including dental and vision insurance through the Union. Retiree members are also encouraged to participate in a variety of activities and trips that provide opportunities for fellowship. You can obtain an application for membership in the WTU Retirees Union by clicking here.


How can I obtain/renew my teaching license?

In order to earn certification to teach in public schools in Washington DC, prospective teachers must satisfy the requirements for initial licensure, which include completing a bachelor's degree and teacher preparation program, passing the required educator testing, and completing a criminal background check.

The Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) is the state education agency that oversees teacher licensure and credentialing. The following links should help guide you through the licensing process.

OSSE Application for Licensure Renewal

OSSE Directory of State-Approved Educator Preparation Programs

OSSE Educator Credential Renewal Requirements

OSSE Educator Licensure Exams Information


How do I change my address in WTU’s records?

Please help us ensure we have your current personal contact information on file. Email [email protected] to update your contact information.


Where can I find out about WTU’s member benefits program?

As a member of the WTU, you have exclusive access to medical, legal and other benefits as well as support should you become unemployed, sick, disabled, or have need of family leave.  Learn more here.


Where can I learn about my rights as a teacher?

The WTU contract with DC Public Schools is the best place to start. You can find the contract here.


What do my dues pay for? What don’t my dues pay for?

The educators in DC public schools formed the Washington Teachers’ Union (WTU) because they realized that by working together collectively and speaking with one voice, their voice would be much stronger than each teacher talking for themselves alone. Dues are utilized to support the WTU’s mission to advocate for the social and educational justice for the students of the District of Columbia and to improving the quality of support, resources, compensation and working conditions for the public servants and proud teachers who educate our students in D.C. Public Schools. Dues are not utilized for political activities.


Where can I find out about WTU’s member benefits program?

As a member of the WTU, you have exclusive access to medical, legal and other benefits as well as support should you become unemployed, sick, disabled, or have need of family leave.  Learn more here: https://www.wtulocal6.net/member_benefits 


How does the WTU decide who to endorse in political elections? How can I make sure none of my dues money goes to candidates I don’t support?

The WTU only endorses candidates who share our vision and commitment to public education and make our endorsements based on their views on public education. The WTU’s political activities are administered through the Committee on Political Education or C.O.P.E. You can read more, including how join the C.O.P.E., here.

WTU is prohibited under federal law from using dues dollars to support political activities.

 


Does WTU offer any leadership or professional development opportunities?

The WTU’s professional development program is designed by teachers, for teachers. WTU’s professional development courses are all research-based, peer-to-peer and solution-driven. All WTU courses are aligned to the DCPS IMPACT Teaching and Learning Framework and Essential Practices Standards 1 through 5. You can learn more about upcoming Professional Development opportunities here.

The WTU offers regular Union Leadership Institutes (ULIs) that give all members the opportunity to learn and develop leadership skills and to acquire the detailed knowledge needed to be an effective teacher representative to help ensure the voice of teachers are heard. Educators can become a member of a School Chapter Advisory Committee (SCAC), a Local School Advisory Team (LSAT), or join one of many other committees or teams. Members can also become a Building Representative, a Delegate to the WTU Representative Assembly or a member of the Executive Board. Full descriptions of School-based leadership positions are available here.


How do I file a grievance?

The Washington Teachers’ Union has a staff of highly trained Field Representatives who advise the Building Reps and SCAC teams, help enforce the WTU-DCPS contract, continually strive to strengthen educator-administrator collaboration, and when necessary, process grievances.

If you believe that you have been subject to unfair labor conditions or your contractual rights have been violated, please contact your Field Representative.


Why is it necessary for the WTU to endorse candidates? How does the WTU screen candidates for endorsement?

The Washington Teachers’ Union established the Committee on Political Education (WTU-COPE) to lead our political activities designed to promote justice and equal opportunity for all. Workers have achieved much by acting collectively to set an agenda and then elect politicians who will help us achieve our goals.

Contributions to COPE are strictly voluntary. Click here to learn more about how you can join the COPE committee or contact [email protected] for more information.


How do I know if I’m eligible for the Pre-Paid Legal Program?

Pre-paid legal services are available to current members of the Washington Teachers’ Union. A description of the services our partners provide are available here.


Where can I find information on open positions in DC Schools?

You can find open positions in DC Public Schools here.


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