The Macoupin County Federation of Teachers, Local #528, IFT/AFT, AFL-CIO has agreed to participate in mediation to help with bargaining a successor agreement with the Gillespie Community Unit School District #7.
The teachers contract expired on June 30, 2021, and the parties had reached a tentative agreement in June however, the Union membership voted down the agreement citing the salary increases being provided as a stipend check instead of a raise to the salary schedule.
Michelle Smith, President of the Union said, “We want to keep strong teachers in the Gillespie School District, and to do that we have to make sure our salary schedule is competitive with surrounding school districts. Choosing not to add money to the salary schedule is basically freezing the schedule and it takes years to make up the difference”.
After the membership voted down the tentative agreement, the Union and the District met in July and the District offered a one-year agreement with a 1.25 percent increase to the salary schedule with no increase to health insurance costs.
The teachers feel this proposal does not reflect their level of commitment to the students or to the District and are hopeful bringing in a mediator will help both parties reach a fair agreement.