Glenbrook High School District 225 ratifies new union contract
The Glenbrook High School District 225 school board has ratified a new 5-year teachers union contract.
Coming out of closed session during Monday's school board meeting, both sides were pleased with the deal. The board unanimously approved the agreement with the Glenbrook Education Association. It takes effect July 1 and expires June 30, 2028.
"This is an extremely well-crafted agreement. It is the product of months of hard work by many, many folks in this room as well as elsewhere," school board President Bruce Doughty said. "It's an honest collaboration in all of the spirit that makes our district so good over so many years.
"Above all, this agreement maintains and fosters the outstanding teaching at the heart of our Glenbrook excellence, providing continuity and stability for our teachers and enabling them to focus on what they do so well and about which they and all of us care so much -- our students' education and growth, and preparation for a successful future," he added.
Though no details were released, the contract will lower class sizes in core academic areas; redesign co-curricular, student activity and athletic staffing levels and stipend structures; and provide student support outside of class.
GEA staff members will receive 3% raises during the first two years of the agreement. A formula using the Consumer Price Index will determine pay increases the following three years.
Appointed as chair of negotiations in 1994, this was the ninth and final contract for GEA President Matt Whipple, Glenbrook South social studies teacher.
Whipple said aspects such as class size hadn't been addressed in 40 years. He added, staff ratified the contract "at a rate I'd never seen before in my career."
Of 451 active members, 435 were available to vote and 433 voted to approve the deal.
"What that shows you is that staff recognizes the district's commitment to them in all of the various ways that this contract functions," Whipple said.
"This is the starting point, and we need to reflect upon how we can better engage each other more fully so that those in the buildings, the classrooms, the labs, the libraries, the gyms and on the fields are the ones that you're really hearing about, because the magic of the Glenbrook way is what's happening there."