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Illinois legislators seek to update collective bargaining and tenure standards with teachers

MONDAY, APRIL 18, 2011 06:45 AM

Illinois state legislators recently reviewed a bill that would make it more difficult for teachers to strike and ties tenure, promotions and terminations to job performance, Illinois Statehouse News reports.

Officials told the news source that the bill passed unanimously in the Senate. The alterations to the collective bargaining rights of teachers unions were the highlight of the proposal. The plan would create two sets of collective bargaining rights for teachers in Chicago and those downstate.

“We all agreed that the most important effort in our negotiations is that at the end of the day what's best for the child in the classroom. And that is how we [created reform],” Kimberley Lightford, state senator, told the news source.

Other key reform proposals include, layoffs based on qualifications, certification and performance evaluations before seniority is considered. Furthermore, the evaluations will be a requirement to attain tenure. Teachers and legislators are happy about the open discussion which has helped avoid similar situations like those that recently took place in Wisconsin.

If passed, these changes will be full implemented by the 2013-2014 school year.