Third tentative deal reached between Dist. 204, teachers

 
 
Updated 11/5/2015 5:25 PM

Teachers and the Indian Prairie Unit District 204 school board have reached a tentative contract agreement -- but there's no guarantee it will be ratified.

This is the third time the two sides have reached a tentative deal during several rounds of negotiations to replace a pact that expired at the end of June for teachers serving 28,500 students from parts of Naperville, Aurora, Bolingbrook and Plainfield.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The 2,100 union members in the Indian Prairie Education Association rejected the second tentative agreement 57 percent to 43 percent in early October. Since then, negotiators from the union and the district have met twice.

Doug Eccaruis, associate superintendent of human resources, said Thursday the sides have reached a new tentative agreement. If it's ratified by union members, the school board could vote on the deal during a meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 16, at the Crouse Education Center, 780 Shoreline Drive, Aurora.

Details of the latest tentative agreement were not immediately available.

Paul Gamboa, president of the Indian Prairie Education Association, said he surveyed members after they rejected both of the two previous agreements to determine what concerns remained.

"Both sides remain committed to solutions," Gamboa said last week. "We're trying to get things settled as quickly as possible."

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He and district administrators have kept quiet about what sticking points remain.

But the first possible deal, which teachers shot down 85 percent to 15 percent in May, would have eliminated post-retirement insurance and the 6 percent raises teachers generally receive in their last years of employment.

The second tentative agreement would have been a three-year pact with terms including an average 3.2 percent salary increase the first year, an average 2.07 percent increase the second year and an average 2.08 percent increase in the third.

Last month, Gamboa said the union's rejection of the district's second offer reflected frustrations over pay freezes enacted during the recession and increases in mandated testing cutting into instructional time.

Under last year's teacher contract, which has remained in effect for the first few months of this school year, a beginning teacher with a bachelor's degree is paid $43,170 a year and a teacher with 23 years experience and a Ph.D is paid $106,966.

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