BESD#53 Board of Education

Dear Parents/Guardians and Bourbonnais Community:

The Board of Education and the Bourbonnais Education Association (BESD #53 teachers) have been negotiating since March of 2020.  

We recognize that both parties share the responsibility to reach an agreement.  To that end, the Board has offered to meet all five of the BEA’s stated contract goals: fair and competitive salary raises for teachers; step and lane structure; common plan time for teachers at all grade levels; maintaining current retirement incentives; and maintaining insurance benefits for current teachers and providing competitive benefits for new teachers.

Unfortunately, however, the BEA has been unwilling to compromise on its salary proposal and instead initiated the pre-strike process with the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board. Based on that action, the earliest the teachers can strike is February 19. The BEA’s decision to strike would directly impact the ability for our schools to remain open. 

BESD #53 students missing any more school this school year in particular is extremely unsettling to the Board.   

The most recent offer of the Board will be posted on our website tomorrow at 

Both the Board and BEA offers will be posted on the IELRB website tomorrow at

As you will see, the Board’s offer is fair and reflects its commitment to our teachers.  The Board’s offer also reflects its responsibility to be prudent with taxpayer money and acknowledges the financial realities of this pandemic. 

Another bargaining session is scheduled with the federal mediator on February 11. The Board remains hopeful that with both parties acting in good faith and willing to compromise, an agreement can be reached and a strike avoided.

BESD #53 Board of Education