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Champaign teachers’ contract proposals at-a-glance

Yesterday, both Champaign Unit 4 and the Champaign Federation of Teachers released their contract proposals to the public. The proposals are the product of the two sides’ 7-hour meeting on Wednesday evening, a meeting that did not result in a deal. The Union’s proposal is here, and Unit 4’s proposal is here.

However, if you want to stay informed about the proposals (as you should) without actually reading the damn things, here’s some bullet points (gathered from various sources, including The News-Gazette and WAND):

  • CFT proposed a 1-year contract with a 3.65% increase to the salary schedule.
  • Unit 4 proposed a 3-year contract with a 1.3% increase to the salary schedule in addition to the 1.7% step increase already existing in the contract’s language.
  • Unit 4 considers the CFT proposal to be a 5.35% total raise, whereas their proposal includes a 3% total raise.
  • CFT is asking the board to limit the number of hours elementary teachers spend supervising but not teaching to 20 minutes per day.
  • Unit 4 says limiting those hours would require 2 additional aides per school at a cost of $1.8 million.
  • CFT’s proposal includes a provision that teachers who feel they’ve been inadequately evaluated be able to petition a joint committee of teachers and administrators with objections.
  • Unit 4 contends that new state law does not permit a petition system for evaluations.
  • CFT and Unit 4 also disagree on how investigations should be handled with regard to teachers placed on administrative leave.
  • The Union would also like principals to write letters of support for teachers returning from leave, but Unit 4 is not prepared to allow such a change.
  • The proposals from the Union would eliminate Unit 4’s expected surplus of $630,000 from the education fund for the 2013-14 school year.
  • Unit 4’s finances currently show a $12 million surplus in the education fund (the fund that pays for teacher salaries) and a $12.2 million surplus in its working cash fund.
  • Unit 4 contends those surpluses are necessary to contend with upcoming costs related to the Affordable Care Act, sequestration, and increased enrollment.

The two sides will meet again with a federal mediator on Oct. 7. CFT has not posted an intent-to-strike notice yet. Such a notice must be filed 10 days prior to a strike. The earliest Champaign teachers could strike is Oct. 18.

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