D.C. Council member Robert White hasn't decided his choice for president this year. (WI file photo)
D.C. Council member Robert White (WI file photo)

The Washington Teachers’ Union announced Tuesday that Robert White is its candidate to be the leader of the District for the next four years.

“We are proud to endorse Robert White to be the next mayor of D.C.,” the union said in a statement. “Robert is a vocal champion of public education and a consistent presence in public schools where he has listened to and partnered with teachers. We know that, as mayor, he will continue to work with teachers to ensure schools are a productive, healthy environment for students and staff.”

The WTU endorsement follows AFSCME District Council 20 — the city’s largest public-sector union — support for White.

White, an at-large D.C. Council member, is competing in the June 21 Democratic mayoral primary against incumbent Muriel Bowser, fellow Council member Trayon White Sr. of Ward 8 and political activist James Butler.

In addition to AFSCME, White has been endorsed by the DC Latino Caucus, DC for Democracy, Revolution DC, the DC Working Families Party, and D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine.

White said he values the importance of teachers.

“I know firsthand how pivotal a good teacher can be in someone’s life,” White said. “A few teachers who believed in me and told me I had potential, and saved me from going down a different path. That is why I am so honored to have the endorsement of our teachers.

“During Mayor Bowser’s two terms, teachers have been ignored and disrespected,” he said. “With 20% of teachers leaving every year and families leaving DCPS in droves, now is a critical moment where more than ever we need a leader who will improve public education and view teachers as partners, not adversaries. As mayor, I will seek out teachers’ feedback and engagement as we work aggressively to make our schools work for every student.”

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