Little movement in pay gap talks sends Proviso teachers back to the picket line
MAYWOOD, Ill. — Proviso high school teachers spent Tuesday on the picket lines protesting the district’s no-deal.
On Monday, negotiations between Proviso District 209 and the Proviso teachers’ union broke down. As a result, students at Proviso Math and Science Academy, Proviso East High School, and Proviso West High School stay out of the classroom.
Proviso teachers‘ union president Maggie Riley said members continue to demand fair pay, among other needs.
“We demand competitive salaries to attract and retain our educators and teachers,” Riley said. “We are also asking for a reduction and a balance in the size of the classes.”
Neither side has agreed to the terms yet.
Carissa Gillespie, a 20-year-old educator at Proviso West, told WGN News she remains hopeful.
“I graduated from this district. I’m passionate about this neighborhood,” Gillespie said. “Just like the 300 teachers here are passionate about this district and our students. It goes beyond this contract for us. Our students deserve resources. They deserve to have their teachers in the building with them.
Midway through Monday’s session, the union demanded a 13% pay rise on a three-year contract.
The district offered a 9% pay raise over three years, a difference of more than $1.34 million.
In a statement sent to WGN News, Proviso Township High School District 209 Board of Education Chairman Rodney Alexander said in part, “The district remains firm in its position that salary increases at the demanded by the syndicate are neither sustainable nor under the best tax conditions. the interest of our parents and other local resident taxpayers.
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The gap in negotiations is frustrating for Steve Rauch, a teacher at Proviso West.
“We sent the request to negotiate about a year ago in March of last year,” Rauch said. “It took all this time to try to reach an agreement. We miss being with our students.
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