Schools report: Educating you on the happenings in area districts

Schools report: Educating you on the happenings in area districts

Area school boards: Ballots almost set

By day's end, voters will know whose names will appear on the April 7 ballot for area school board seats.

In Champaign's Unit 4, which will have five openings, seven newcomers have filed before today's deadline, according to the Champaign County Clerk's website: Amy Armstrong, Christopher James Kloeppel, Kathy Richards, Prudence Runkle, Kathy Shannon, Jonathan Westfield and Alissia Young.

The county clerk's website lists five candidate filings in three other local districts: Mahomet-Seymour (including President Terry Greene), St. Joseph-Ogden and Tolono.

Both candidates to file in Urbana — Paul Poulosky and Benita Rollins-Gay — are looking to retain their current seats.

Paxton-Buckley-Loda: No charges for board secretary

Ford County's state's attorney says he won't file criminal charges against a 20-year Paxton-Buckley-Loda school board member and Button Township supervisor.

Dean Swan (right), 52, was arrested last month over allegations he steered public business to a trucking firm without disclosing his ownership of the firm. The preliminary charges included a Class 3 felony (official misconduct) and a Class 4 felony (violating the Public Officer Prohibited Activities Act).

"I have determined that there is insufficient evidence upon which to base a successful prosecution in this matter. Therefore, I will not be filing any charges," Ford State's Attorney Randy Yedinak said in an email to the Paxton Record.

Swan, currently the PBL school board's secretary, had not filed a petition as of Friday to become a candidate for re-election. His four-year term is due to expire in April.

Oakwood: New superintendent a familiar face

Oakwood didn't have to look far for its new superintendent. He's Gary Lewis (above, right), who for the past six years has held the same title in Catlin.

The Oakwood school board offered Lewis a three-year deal, with an initial salary of $124,000. He'll start on July 1.

"I just felt that is was the right time to move on and look for a new adventure and when Oakwood job was posted, I felt that it would be a good fit for me," Lewis, who's also the principal at Catlin High, told N-G correspondent Douglas Toole. "

Oakwood board President Sue Johnson said 18 candidates expressed interest in the position, created when the late Karen Perry announced nearly a year ago that she'd step down. Lewis' appointment comes days after Danville introduced new Superintendent Alicia Geddis and weeks after Catlin residents voted to consolidate with the Jamaica district for the 2015-16 school year.

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