Press Release

MARENGO — Members of the Riley Education Association (REA) and community members will pack Monday’s board meeting to voice concerns over ongoing contract negotiations. Teachers will address the board, asking them to put students first and come to a fair agreement as soon as possible. REA members have been negotiating for a fair contract with Riley Community Consolidated School District 18 since April and have been working without a contract since mid-August.

“Our members’ salaries don’t meet the cost of living standard for Marengo and other neighboring districts” said REA President Richelle Lagerstrom. “We cannot lose out on high quality educators. We’ve done the math on what we’re asking for and know that the district has adequate funds to meet our requests without imposing higher taxes on the community. Investing in our teachers goes back into the community. We’re asking the board to come to the table and do what’s best for our community and for our students.”

REA is composed of 24 teachers serving 291 students in rural McHenry County.

“We want what’s best for our students, our schools and our communities,” Lagerstrom said. “Our proposals will help us attract and retain high quality educators to work with our students and those proposals are also fiscally responsible. They will not impact district services or require a tax increase. We’re hopeful that we can come to a fair agreement that’s in everyone’s best interests soon.”

REA members will pack the school board meeting tonight, Monday, Nov. 19 at 7 p.m. Several members plan to address the board during the public comments. The meeting will be held at Riley Community Consolidated School District 18 (9406 Riley Rd., Marengo) at 7 p.m.

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The 135,000 member Illinois Education Association (IEA-NEA) is the state’s largest education employee’s organization. IEA represents preK-12 teachers outside of the city of Chicago and education support staff, higher education faculty, retired education employees and students preparing to become teachers, statewide.