New deal for Dist. 203 support staff includes raises

Updated 9/9/2015 9:09 AM

More than 500 educational support personnel in Naperville Unit District 203 now have a new three-year contract.

The school board unanimously approved the deal Tuesday night, giving union members raises of 3.2 percent this year, 2.5 percent next year and 2 percent in the contract's final year, Superintendent Dan Bridges said.


There will not be any advancement on a step scale that rewards seniority during the three-year agreement.

Bridges called support personnel "important partners" in the education provided to roughly 16,000 students in District 203 and said the contract "reflects the great contributions" they make to student learning every day.

Members of the Naperville Educational Support Professionals Association include several types of teaching, special education or language assistants; secretaries; registrars; computer support associates; career center assistants; auditorium managers; campus supervisors; health technicians; printing or warehouse supervisors and library assistants. They have established a productive relationship with the school board in recent years through monthly labor/management meetings, said Joan Merkin, the union's president.

"It was a great collaboration between the board and the Naperville Educational Support Professionals Association," Merkin said about the new contract, which the union's membership ratified Aug. 19. "It solidified the good relationship we have."

Other minor changes in the contract revised health benefits to meet requirements of the Affordable Care Act and better aligned staff development to meet professional needs of union members, Merkin and district officials said.

The contract's effective date was July 1, which is the beginning of the district's fiscal year.

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