CARPENTERSVILLE – The District 300 School Board will vote this Monday, Oct. 23, on a new contract with its custodial, maintenance, and secretarial staff, represented by the District 300 Educational Services Personnel Association (DESPA).
The agreement represents a healthy collaboration between employees and the school board. The new contract would provide a competitive salary and benefit package for the approximately 170 members of DESPA, while enabling the district to focus on overall fiscal responsibility and day-to-day operational efficiency.
School Board President Mary Fioretti heralded the contract and extended her gratitude to the association members.
“We sincerely appreciate the collaborative nature of our custodians and secretaries,” Fioretti said. “On a daily basis, they keep our facilities looking beautiful and our administrative needs filled efficiently for all 19,000 students of District 300. Our men and women take great pride in their work, and it shows.”
DESPA members voted on Thursday evening, Oct. 19, to ratify the 4-year contract, which, if approved Monday by the school board, will be retroactive to July 1, 2006, and run through June 30, 2010. The employees had worked under the terms of their former contract since it expired on June 30, 2006.
The school board meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. Monday in the auditorium of Carpentersville Middle School, 100 Cleveland Avenue. Public comments are welcome but sign-in is required before the meeting begins.
Some noteworthy aspects of the agreement include:
The salary schedule was overhauled to better match other custodial/secretarial collective bargaining agreements in the region. The new schedule phases out larger “steps,” or points where employees receive salary increases, and adds a smaller 3 percent step for each year of the contract.
The district will be able to more efficiently meet the needs of its schools by cutting some administrative red tape. The district will have greater flexibility to transfer employees as needed to schools that may have unforeseen critical needs.
The district will limit the number of accrued sick days that it could pay an employee at retirement. However, employees will have the option of crediting unused sick days to the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund for retirement.
New employees will gradually accrue sick days over the course of their first year of employment, rather than being provided the full allotment of sick days at their hire date.
Employees will pay 30 percent of the premium for family health-insurance, and 20 percent for single health-insurance.