Teachers' Contract Approved
At its April 18, 2022 meeting, the District 204 Board of Education approved a new four-year contract for teachers.
Last Monday, 76 percent of Indian Prairie Education Association (IPEA) members voted in favor of approving the teachers' contract. The new four-year agreement calls for an increase in salaries of five percent in year one, five percent in year two, and in years three and four the rate will be equal to the Consumer Price Index capped at 5%. Teachers will also receive a one-time bonus of $1,500.
Additionally, coaches, club sponsors, summer school and extended school year teachers, internal substitutes, and lunchroom supervisors will see an increase in stipends for their extra duties. The starting salary for first-year teachers will increase by $2,356, bringing it to $49,476. The contract also includes language that either side may terminate the contract after year two if the district experiences significant financial hardship or an increase in revenue due to legislative changes from the State.
Further, sick leave will increase from 12 to 13 days with additional modifications for birth or adoption of a child and bereavement time.
Board of Education President Laurie Donahue described the significance of the contract given the current teacher shortage. "We are pleased to finalize a new contract that supports our teaching staff needs while meeting our fiscal responsibility to deliver a balanced budget,” Donahue said. “This new contract helps us to continue to keep and attract top talent in our district."
IPEA President Katie Popp said, "The result of this agreement reflects the collaborative relationship between the association and the board of education. It recognizes the quality of education that the staff of Indian Prairie provides to the students of 204."
As a result of the hard work and dedication of teachers, Indian Prairie students have consistently performed significantly higher than state averages on standardized tests. In addition, all three District 204 high schools recently made U.S. News & World Report's national list of Best High Schools and were ranked in the top 50 for the state. Dr. Adrian Talley said the teachers continue to deliver relevant, rigorous instruction as well as establish meaningful relationships with all of our students. "I am especially proud of our staff in what they have been able to accomplish over the past two years. The approval of this contract represents a continual collaboration between our teachers and the school system. Our teachers continue to rise to the ever changing occasions with aplomb, dedication, and exemplary standards," Talley said.
IPEA has more than 2,000 members, making up close to 70 percent of the district's workforce. Both the IPEA and the Board of Education continue to focus on preparing students to be future-ready and inspiring all students to achieve their greatest potential.