Dear Staff, Families, and Community,
The Board, Administration, and the District 65 Educators’ Council (DEC) leadership have worked intently since February to reach a fair and financially sustainable contract that honors the hard work and dedication of our teachers. As part of the public posting process initiated by DEC, both teams are required to submit their most recent offers to the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board (IELRB). These documents are now available on the IELRB and District 65 websites. We invite you to review both offers using the link below.
We believe the Board’s offer reflects a commitment to providing fair, competitive compensation and working conditions that support high quality teaching and learning. The offer preserves time for teachers and their principals to collaborate to meet the academic and social-emotional needs of students. The offer closely aligns salary increases to growth in income which is critical to the district’s long-term financial stability. The Board’s goal with this offer is to preserve jobs, minimize layoffs, and maintain class sizes by reducing pending deficits.
Working within the District’s financial limitations, the Board has presented the offer summarized below.
Compensation and Benefits
- Teachers will receive bonuses or raises in each year of the four-year contract as follows:
- Teachers will receive a 1.25% bonus in lieu of raises for the first two contract years.
- Teachers will receive a raise linked to cost of living (“base increase”) and a separate raise for each year of service (“step increase”) for the final two years of the contract.
- Cost of living increases will be between 1% and 2.5% annually, closely aligned to increases in District revenue.
- Years of service increases will range from .9% to 4.8% annually, with an average of 2%, depending on the number of years of service.
- Teachers will continue to have the opportunity for additional raises (“track movement increase”) throughout the length of the contract. Track movement recognizes continuous learning and additional coursework, participation on school or district committees, and the completion of leadership projects. Track movement increases range from 5% to 15%.
- For example, a teacher earning the District’s average salary would receive a minimum cumulative salary increase of 7.5% (without track movement) to 15.4% (with track movement) over the four years of the contract not including the 1.25% bonuses paid out in the first two years of the contract. These increases are based on the minimum possible for the cost of living raise, which is tied to the Consumer Price Index and may therefore increase.
- Teachers will pay lower health care contributions for the first year of the contract, followed by sharing any additional health coverage cost increases equally.
- K-5 classroom teachers will be given a fifth day of planning time in year three of the four-year contract.
- Special education teachers and related services staff will be given increased planning time.
- Teaching staff and administrators will work collaboratively to plan team meetings.
- The District commits to high quality, ongoing professional learning and offers a 5% reduction of staff meeting time.
- DEC members will be given additional days off to participate in union-organized activities both locally and nationally.
- Teachers’ participation in evening events will be considered voluntary beyond curriculum night and kindergarten information night.
- The DEC president or designee will participate in principal interview panels.
We sincerely hope to reach an agreement and avoid a strike. We will provide updates in the coming days and weeks and will continue to be as transparent as possible while continuing to bargain in good faith.
Candance Chow, Board President
Paul Goren, Superintendent of Schools