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Huntley teachers reach tentative deal

Updated: December 19, 2012 11:46AM

HUNTLEY — The Huntley Consolidated School District 158 Board of Education and its teachers have reached a tentative contract agreement.

That announcement came in a brief joint statement from both the school board and teachers union at about 2:30 a.m. Wednesday. And it came after five hours of negotiations that started just after those teachers had declared an impasse Tuesday evening in their negotiations with the district, according to Huntley Education Association co-president Julie McLaughlin.

“Both sides are proud to be able to achieve their mutual goals,” McLaughlin said.

Members of the Huntley Education Association overwhelmingly had voted in mid-October to authorize union leadership to strike, just days after a similar vote by teachers in next-door-neighbor Community Unit School District 300.

Teachers in Carpentersville-based District 300 now are the last in the Elgin area without a contract or tentative agreement, although both sides continue to negotiate.

District 158 and its union had been in negotiations since July and agreed to mediation in late September, after teachers rejected the first of two proposed agreements reached between the school board and the union, according to the district. But the HEA said it had not agreed to anything when it took the district’s last offer to its membership before the strike vote.

The two sides had resolved nearly all their issues with the teachers contract last summer, the board had said Tuesday, and the remaining issues on the table were “primarily compensation.” Neither side previously had commented on the major issues in their contract negotiations, and McLaughlin declined to comment further until after teachers vote on the tentative agreement.

District 158 officials also declined to release details about the tentative agreement until the vote, scheduled for 4:30 p.m. Monday at Huntley High School, according to the joint statement.

McLaughlin said she felt “very hopeful” about that vote.

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