Prospect Heights teachers on strike

PROSPECT HEIGHTS, Ill. (WLS) -- Prospect Heights teachers took to the picket lines Wednesday after negotiations with District 23 School Board broke down at midnight. The sticking point: salary.

While both sides have moved, the teachers union said the district did not move enough to compete with other area districts. When it became clear the board was not going to respond to the union's latest offer or schedule the next meeting time, 150 teachers walked off the job.

"We are trying to get an agreement that attracts and retains teachers we want to make sure that educators in this district stay here," Prospect Heights Education Association President Bob Miller said.

The union president said both sides are less than $500,000 apart. He said the difference can be made up by dipping into the district's reserves.

District 23 Superintendent Debbie Wilson said that's easier said than done.

"Those reserves go pretty quickly if you have an unforeseen circumstance," she said, admitting there is room to move, but not at the level teachers want.
With no talks scheduled, parents may be looking at a second day of strikes Thursday.

"I'm lucky. I work from home so it's not an issue," Pam Jelaca said.

Kids have mixed responses to the possibility of more days off.

"I think it's great," Jack Genualdi said.

"I want to be back in school and do my activities," Ashley Yasak said.

School will be closed again on Thursday as both sides return to the negotiating table.
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