Joliet District 86 teacher’s union reach tentative agreement

The union consists of 737 certified staff members

Teachers march outside District 86 Administrative Center on Monday in Joliet. District 86 teachers are currently working with a contract.

Joliet District 86′s teacher’s union has reached a tentative agreement with District 86 in Joliet on a new three-year contract.

Council No. 86 of the American Federation of Teachers – Local 604 has been negotiating a contract with District 86 since spring 2022, and that District 86 certified staff had worked without a contract since Sept. 1, Therese Skwarczynski, president of Joliet Elementary Council 86, AFT Local 604 and vice president of AFT Local 604, previously said in a written statement.

The union consists of 737 certified staff members, Skwarczynski said Friday in a written statement.

Skwarczynski said the union negotiated a 15% salary increase over three years. The union also increased the rate of pay for all duties and extracurricular activities throughout the contract, Skwarczynski said.

Salary enhancement for teachers who “put in for retirement” was increased from 4% to 6%. The union also increased tuition reimbursement for continuing education for teachers, Skwarczynski said.

In addition, the tentative agreement clarifies the language for extra duty, transfers and plan time, Skwarczynski said.

“We are very pleased with the tentative agreement that was ratified,” Skwarczynski said in Friday’s written statement. “Our negotiations team put in endless hours of time preparing proposals, gathering data, reviewing neighboring district’s contracts, and negotiating at the table with the district. We feel like we were able to secure a healthy tentative agreement for our members.”

The union had previously organized a march on Nov. 14 outside the Joliet Public Schools District 86 office on Raynor Avenue.

Sandy Zalewski, spokesperson for District 86, said nothing is finalized until the Joliet Public Schools District 86 approves the agreement at its Dec. 14 board meeting.