Friday, July 27, 2012
D300, Union Call In State Mediator For Contract Talks
Thursday's release reports the request for a mediator from the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board is to comply with a new state law requiring one "in a certain time period prior to the start of the upcoming school year". In fact, the law says IELRB was supposed to have imposed a mediator July 1. That, coincidentally, is the day last year's 12-month contract expired but the IELRB mediator date's actually keyed to the start of classes in the district, Aug. 13.
Contract meetings have been going on since January but negotiators have refused to comment on them whenever FEN's inquired. Thursday's D300 release complains the union won't tell Board negotiators how much money teachers want. LEAD 300 President Kolleen Hanetho said this morning the union had a proposal ready at the last session but Board negotiators didn't want to hear it.
D300's draft new budget is premised on no increase in teacher's salaries but does include about a two percent increase in teacher compensation for seniority and upgraded teaching credentials. The latest version sees the District ending the new school year $1 million in the hole and that's only if the State doesn't offload any teacher pension obligations onto it this year.
The new wrinkle in the mediation law allows either the Board or the the union to declare an impasse after 15 days of mediation. Then, within a week, both sides have to submit final offers. In the meantime the District has said it will continue to abide by the terms of last year's contract.