The school board recognizes the community would like to see the strike issue resolved for both the staff and the students.
The school board would like to continue to give annual raises at least 2% above Consumer Price Index as they have every year in the last decade. The financial reality does not allow us to do so.
The State of Illinois, under it’s own financial pressures, underpaid the district by $1.5 million dollars last year. Furthermore our financial projections show a $2.2 million dollar deficit next year, even if we do not give raises to the staff.
The Board is trying to avoid deficit spending.
What does that mean for D46 students and community?
- The district may need to eliminate 37 positions for school year 2013-2014.
- The district has already begun discussions of the possible need to close a school.
- Staff raises at this time will add to the deficit and could lead to further teacher eliminations, increased class size enrollments and possible program elimination.
- There is a very real possibility that the State of Illinois will shift some of the pension burden to the school districts.
For the teachers and their many community supporters it must seem that the Board of Education is unwilling to give the staff adequate raises.
As with everyone, we hope that an economic turnaround will start to improve revenues to the district.
Until that time, the board is committed to the long term financial health of the district. This offer gives some compensation increase to our outstanding teachers, while maintaining their excellent benefits and attempting to lessen the negative impact to our students.