Kewanee teachers secure new contract
KEWANEE, Ill. (KWQC) - After more than six months and with the help of a federal mediator, the Kewanee Education Association negotiations team and the Kewanee Community Unit School District 229 Board of Education have accepted a new contract.
Sunday night, the Kewanee Education Association announced that members have voted to approve their new contract. The new agreement was made final on Monday night, according to a media release from Bridget Shanahan media relations director. The new agreement provides historic wage increases, back pay and addresses the teacher shortage.
“We are proud of the work we did at the bargaining table on behalf of our students and Kewanee staff,” said KEA President Ruth Kapacinkas. “We represented out members’ interests in terms of historic pay increases and establishing a shared understanding of the meaning and value of a wage schedule. The wins we got will truly mean a better education, better schools and a better community for all our students. We are incredibly grateful to everyone in the community, including all the parents and students, who supported us in so many ways.”
According to the KEA the new contract includes the following:
- Creates a joint committee with members from the board of education and KEA
- Includes a teacher shortage fix
- Provides historic wage increases for Kewanee teachers and staff
- Includes backpay
“We plan to continue to push for better in future contract negotiations,” said Kapacinkas. “We need to remember a salary schedule that provides wage increases based on an individual’s experience, loyalty and educational advancement result in a more transparent wage structure. When a pay structure is transparent, the community sees its investment in the best public schools and future costs are more predictable.”
According to the media release, once signed, the contract is immediately in effect since KEA’s current contract is already expired. The new deal will be in place for three years, 2023-2026.
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