Kishwaukee College Board of Trustees unanimously approves four-year contract with faculty association

During the August 9, 2022, regularly scheduled Kishwaukee College Board of Trustees meeting, the Board unanimously voted to approve a four-year contract with the Kishwaukee College Education Association (KCEA). 

The negotiating team, consisting of three faculty and three College administrators, utilized Interest-Based Bargaining (IBB), which is a negotiating strategy that focuses on developing mutually agreeable solutions to issues brought up by both parties. The College has been utilizing IBB since 2016. Members of the KCEA negotiating team included: Dominica Blalock, Assistant Professor-Mathematics; Dr. Nicole Potts, Associate Professor-Chemistry; and Kyra Rider, Assistant Professor-Mathematics (KCEA Lead Negotiator). Members of the Administration team included: Chase Budziak, Dean, Office of Instruction; Barbara Leach, Interim Vice President of Instruction (Administration Lead Negotiator); and Cindy McCluskey, Executive Director of Human Resources.

Rider commented, “It has been a very collaborative experience. We went into negotiation topics that we thought would be difficult, and through careful and thoughtful communication, we came up with solutions that made everyone feel good. In the end, we have a contract that both teams are mutually happy with.”

Financial highlights include an average raise of 4.98% over the four years, health insurance percentage of premiums and coverage to remain the same with the addition of a Health Savings Account incentive for those members electing a high deductible plan, and compensating faculty rank advancement.

Bob Johnson, Chair of the Board, praised the team for their efforts, “The Board is very appreciative of the efforts by the negotiation team to reach a mutually agreeable four-year contract. We feel the contract recognizes all the hard work and dedication of our faculty and speaks to the ability of the College to continue to provide quality instruction. We believe the contract is not only fair for the faculty but for the taxpayer and the students. Inflation has taken a toll on everyone, and we remain committed to investing in our employees during these challenging financial times.”

Leach commended the faculty for their dedication to the process, “After five months of good-faith negotiating, I am proud of where we have landed. We utilized data from peer institutions in compensation, benefits, and best practices to support discussions and ensure the College continues to be a fair and desired place to work.”

The new contract is effective on Wednesday, August 17.