Orland School District 135 paraprofessional Melanie Walsh took a new position with the district in June as a secretary, after 15 years with the district. On Sept. 21, Walsh was informed that she could take back her old parapro position and sign away the right to file a grievance, or be terminated.
All that was apparently said to Walsh is that board members were unhappy with the hiring process, though others contend nothing was wrong with the hiring method. Board members John Carmody, Ann Gentile, Tom Cunningham and Tina Zekich voted for the demotion, while members Lynne Donegan, Mary Bragg and Joe LaMargo voted against.
Since then, the Illinois Federation of Teachers has filed a demotion grievance against the district, and an unfair labor practices claim will follow.
IFT Field Service Director Deneen Pajeau estimated the litigation could cost the district $100,000.
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