Springfield teachers to meet with federal mediator

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA)– Teachers in Springfield are still working to get on the same page as their school district. They will meet with a federal mediator again Thursday to try come to a resolve with District 186.

Members of the Springfield Education Association got their first look at a contract proposal from the district with a mediator in attendance Monday night. Union members were overwhelmingly unsatisfied with the plan.

Teachers with the association have been working without a contract since August. When they finally saw a financial offer from the district, anticipation quickly turned into disappointment. Around 600 members of the association were in attendance and 90 percent of those members felt the deal was unfair and inequitable. Springfield education association leader Aaron Graves said teachers want the district to go back to the drawing board.

“In the end, it is disappointing. Over the last 10 years, our membership feels that it helped to balance the budget for the school district. And it’s been balanced on the backs of our members,” said association president Aaron Graves.

Teachers in Springfield said they are watching the moves of other unions like teachers in Chicago but unlike teachers there, educators in Springfield said striking is their last resort.

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