Rockford School Board Approves Teacher Contracts

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ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Months of negotiations have officially come to an end, a new, four year deal is now in place for teachers in Rockford Public Schools.

Tuesday night the school board overwhelmingly approved the deal during a special meeting. Interim Superintendent Dr. Robert Willis outlined the contract discussing some of it's key points. Under the new deal teachers will pay higher health insurance premiums , kindergarten classes can now have a maximum of 28 students, up from 26, and the district will continue paying teacher pensions at their current rate. The district expects to save $9.5 million over the course of the deal.

Harmon Mitchell, School Board President, says "We wanted, as a board, to have a fair contract but we wanted to get it done. Now that it is done and passed, we can move on to all the other plans and good things for the kids as well as the teachers. But it's a big relief and a win-win situation for both sides."

Now that the new contract has been approved Dr. Willis says it will be up to each of the schools if they want to make up any missed events due to the two day strike.

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- The Rockford School Board has made it official, District 205 teachers now have a new four year contract.

The board voted tonight in favor of the new agreement.

The teachers union has already approved the contract, passing it with a 1,264-to-12 vote on Saturday.

More details tonight on the 23 News Update at 10.

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Rockford Public School teachers are on the verge of having closure with a new four-year-contract tonight; all that's remaining is final approval from the school board on the deal.

Months of negotiations over a new contract for Rockford Public School teachers come down to tonight. Tonight the school board will vote on the deal, which would create labor peace within the district for the next four years.

The teachers union has already approved the contract, passing it with a 1,264-to-12 vote on Saturday.

REA President Karen Bieschke says the two sides had to hammer out nearly 30 different issues to come to an agreement. Included among those sticking points was health care costs. As for the cancelled sports due to the two day strike, there's still no word on when or if those events will be made up.

Once the deal is ratified, there's still no timetable when the details of the contract will be made public. We'll make sure to bring you the results of the vote as soon as they become available.

52 bargaining sessions were held before the district and the teachers union came to a tentative agreement

This was the first strike in Rockford Public Schools since 1984.

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