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C4CH- THE PLAN, Path Forward for D86

C4CH has outlined a detailed plan for a sustainable pathway forward to reinstate ALL sports and activities, maintain educational excellence, update facilities, embrace fiscal prudence and heal the divisions. This is a document to bridge the divide and implement a sustainable business model for D86.



1. Reinstate ALL Sports and Activities Immediately - implement a sustainable user fee (activity fee) of approximately $300/student to cover the $1.2M in costs.  Reverse the approach that hurts the students and harms the social fabric of the community (i.e. reinstate football, cheerleading, pom poms, swimming, etc.). Those who cannot afford the fee won't have to pay. Fundraising can reduce costs further.

2. Establish a $45M Spending Cap - for repairs and replacements and a Phase I and II approach using evidence-based research (EBR) for priorities consistent with D86 community survey results:

  • Phase I - improvements in security, safety and high priority items - use the $19.5M bonding capacity that requires no referendum vote - can start now!

  • Phase II - secondary improvements - put forth a reasonable $25.5M referendum, conditional on teacher's union accepting needed reforms to work rules and benefits.

  • Eliminate operational waste and inefficiencies – create a 4-year plan

  • Implement fair user fees for extra services - establish a sustainable business model to minimize reliance on property tax increases with efficiency and user fees to protect property values. Allow users to share in spending increases.


3. Seek collaboration with Teachers Union - implement reforms:

  • Move to customer-based schedule for guidance counselors, social workers, and school tutoring for before and after school hours.

  • return to one preparation period per day, gradually

  • eliminate accumulation of annual sick leave, unsustainable and unfair 

  • phase out of free healthcare after retirement on the local district

  • eliminate taxpayer subsidies to annual employer pension payments

  • responsible changes to tenure

  • common sense teacher evaluations with parent and student input per the past referendum that was approved overwhelmingly by voters

  • eliminate pension spiking to the extent allowed by law

  • employees to pay more for their healthcare, in parity with the private sector


4. Teacher's Union Contract Negotiations Transparency Improvements - since this is the largest expense on our tax bills, taxpayers should not be in the dark, Illinois style, when this is under local control. Routine mail and email of details for teacher union negotiations should occur in order to offer full transparency. Publicly and routinely disclose the following:


  • Objectives and desired outcomes from both sides for each new contract

  • Negotiation progress achievements and/or barriers

  • Pass a Board resolution for a 45-day public/taxpayer notification policy prior to any Board vote on any major labor contract:

  • Prepare and disseminate to the public a contract summary statement outlining contractual costs and terms with comparison to previous contract;

  • Hold at least two meetings after disclosure for public input and debate

  • Disclose any strike threats as the kids should not be used as political bargaining pawns



5.   Eliminate Redundant Department Chairs – create a single department chair serving both campuses to enable efficiencies and consistent practices in D86.


6.   Reset the Referendum Scope - eliminate any items that increase taxes without evidence-based research that supports educational or infrastructure NEED.


7.   Pursue Private Funding - for all large projects such as the pool and fine arts center using naming rights and other creative methods to reduce the tax burden


8.   Consider using private aquatics facilities - for swimming, diving and water polo and possibly wrestling & gymnastics as well.  The private sector does not have to pay pensionable stipends nor "Illinois' prevailing wages" during construction which brings costs down by 30% or more. More to come on this point.


9.   Hold meetings with "No" and "Yes" voters to collaborate - on a mutually acceptable spending plan that stays within the $45M budget cap for improvements spending. No such meetings occurred on the past two failed referendums.


10. Implement user fees for excess college-level/AP courses - set a limit on advanced placement course participation after which a user fee for additional AP courses will be charged to make these course offerings budgetarily sustainable.


11. Increase student parking fees to a sustainable level - a sustainable approach to parking privileges and spending that matches income is needed.  $50/semester charged is too low while kids pay 5X that to park nearby.  


12. Reconsider busing cuts – which negatively impact lower income families.


13. Assign a Competent Facilities Chairperson - with the experience and technical skills to lead facilities spending (two failed referenda under the same unqualified political chairperson. A skilled party is needed.)


14. Disallow expansion of any building footprint unless future operating costs are lowered - expansion design should lower rather than increase operating costs with technology and design. Student population is flat (sustainability).


15. Review programs and other ideas for cost savings - few if any programs have been eliminated over the years while class offerings keep increasing under flat enrollment.  Cuts to offerings should occur or revenue from user fees should be implemented so economic decisions are made regarding non-core offerings.  Adding free guitar classes this past year is but one example.

 Please Vote NO! and push for the above Plan. 

Click on the PDF icon above to download the plan

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