BOURBONNAIS – Bourbonnais Education Association (BEA) members are walking the picket line again today after declaring a strike on Thursday. The Bourbonnais Elementary School District 53 Board of Education (BOE) would not bargain over the weekend, and no dates have been set for negotiations this week. BEA continues to be available to meet with the BOE any day.
The following statement is attributable to BEA President Lauren Lundmark:
“The mediator reached out to both parties on Friday as per the plan we put in place on Wednesday night. When contacted by the mediator, the board team said they are not ready to make any movement in negotiations. Because the board is unwilling to negotiate, the mediator did not call another meeting. BEA told the mediator we are willing to make some movement.
To be clear, we presented the last proposal on Wednesday night, so we are waiting for the board to make a proposal. The ball is in their court. Students cannot come back to school, until the board comes back to the table. We are available every to bargain every single day. We want to get back to our classrooms as soon as possible.”
BEA represents 167 teachers, speech pathologists, psychologists and social workers who serve more than 2400 students. The district and BEA began contract negotiations in March 2020. BEA is currently working without a contract and has been since the beginning of the school year.
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.