Gifford OKs bus purchase, plans for bus barn

GIFFORD — The school district continues to pay for items damaged or destroyed in last November's tornado.

At its meeting last week, the school board approved the purchase of a school bus. Soon, it is expected to approve a bid to build a new bus barn — replacing the one flattened by the Nov. 17 twister.

John Roska: Registering a student in school

Q: What's required to register a student in school? Can schools require birth certificates and Social Security numbers? What if a student doesn't have them?

A: Four different proofs are required to register a student: of health-related exams, immunizations, age and residency,

Increase in suspensions a concern for Champaign schools; neighboring districts can relate

It's something a school administrator would rather keep out of the spotlight.

— 1,549 school suspensions given in the last academic year, the highest number in the last five years.

— 853 suspensions given to K-5 students — a jump of 368 from the previous year.

— And 4,133 discipline referrals for that same age group — more than twice the number of the year before.

School site may well become central in years ahead

Cornfields. Fringe. The boonies.

The proposed site for Central High School along the city's northern border has inspired those descriptions from residents who see it as urban sprawl.

The site itself — 80 acres north of Interstate Drive, where Neil Street ends — is still a farm field, and to the north and beyond is nothing but soybeans, corn, trees and silos.

On The Money: For $426.26 ...

A local look at the cost of doing business


Themes for next strategic plan in works

CHICAGO — College affordability, diversity and inclusion. The university's role in economic development. Thinking globally. Helping the state of Illinois address workforce challenges. Collaborating among campuses and other institutions to address educational issues such as the achievement gap.

And that's just part of the list.

New Central High School: It's back to Interstate Drive

CHAMPAIGN — School officials say they will likely move forward with plans to build a new Central High School on the northern edge of Champaign, now that Dodds Park is definitively not an option.

UI medical-school plan gets major overhaul

URBANA — Plans to operate a new University of Illinois medical school under a public-private partnership model have been set aside, and a new governance structure for the engineering-focused college is now being considered.

UI trustees to vote on $4.5 million more for State Farm Center

CHAMPAIGN — The price tag for the massive renovation of State Farm Center is about to get even bigger.

The $165 million budget could bump up to almost $170 million pending approval from the UI Board of Trustees.

The board meets Thursday in Chicago to consider the request for a budget increase and several other proposals, including a raise for basketball coach John Groce.

Neighbors: EIU, UI Springfield dean's lists

Eastern Illinois University

The following area students were named to the dean's list at Eastern Illinois University for the spring semester.

Argenta: Jaelen Myers

Arthur: Alanna Dukeman

Atwood: Nicholas Appleby, Shlby Helfrich

Broadlands: Kirsten Place

Catlin: Ryan Isenhower, Brandon Spencer