The latest update: D124 Calls Bagaining Session With Teachers Union for Wednesday
Day two of the Evergreen Park Elementary School District 124 teachers strike continues without another bargaining session scheduled.
As Patch reported earlier this morning, the district does not expect to allow teachers to make-up for the days they have missed during the strike. Instead, an alternate plan involving substitutes and volunteers is being considered for the strike make-up days.
Read: D124 Plays Hardball With EP Teachers Union
On the picket lines today, union leaders were disheartened that language about make-up days was even discussed at the final bargaining session on Monday.
“I’ve never seen in 16 years a board of education put that language in before a strike even happens,” said Dave Comerford, spokesman for the Illinois Federation of Teachers.
Today the district released a statement containing many of the same points D124 Superintendent Dr. Robert Machak made to Patch earlier. A full copy is attached to this post. The statement reads in part:
The Board believes it is the strike that is unconscionable and harmful to students, parents and the community. The Union’s activities leading to the strike were harmful to the students, parents and the community. This Board does not intend to reward striking employees who harm the students, their parents and our community.
In front of Central Junior High Evergreen Park Federation of Teachers co-president Mariellen Newquist said that the board’s stance on make-up days sends a disappointing message to teachers and the community.
“The message seems very misguided.” Newquist said. “It seems to be more about how they can punish us.”
Just before noon the union received a message from Machak that he hoped to get back to the table. A bargaining session has not yet been scheduled.
Comerford hopes any meeting session would see the board arrive with some movement on their terms.
"The fact that they left it open until Friday was, in my opinion, sending a message that you are not going to see anything new before then," Comerford said.
As both sides await the next round of talks, teachers, parents and students continue to demonstrate. A group of parents entered the district office Tuesday morning to voice their concerns.
Strikers continue to march down 95th Street and demonstrate at each of the district's five schools. A group of students from Southwest and Southeast elementary schools even wrote a parody version of this hit song "Call Me Maybe." A video is attached to this post.
Read Past Coverage of the Contract Negotiations:
- Strike On: EP Teachers Walk Picket Line
- Last Chance for EP Teachers and D124 to Avoid Strike
- Scenes of a Protest: EP Teachers Stage Noisy Rally on 95th Street
- Threat of EP Teachers Strike Looms
- EP Teachers Set Oct. 2 Strike Date
- No Agreement In D124 Contract Talks