Report cites gaps in children's education

Children’s advocates have focused for several years on early learning — preparing young children for kindergarten — but a new report says what comes next is just as crucial.

School chiefs hope regional offices remain

DANVILLE – The idea of doing away with schools' regional offices of education leaves Vermilion County district superintendents baffled as to who will provide services for bus-driver training, area-wide schools for dropouts and truants and GED testing, some of their main services to local districts.

Transportation funding cut might be hurdle to school consolidation

No matter how much the state pays – or doesn't pay – for transportation, school districts still have to get kids to school and get them home.

If the General Assembly eventually approves Gov. Pat Quinn's budget proposal to cut $95 million from transportation funding, busing will become another unfunded, or under-funded, mandate.

Urbana board wrestles with early childhood center decisions

URBANA – Plans to follow an aggressive schedule in designing and building a new early childhood center for the Urbana school district have hit a snag.

Bill calls for inspector general for state universities

SPRINGFIELD – There would be a special inspector general to investigate charges of fraud and mismanagement in Illinois' higher education system under a bill (SB131) approved 6-3 by a Senate committee Tuesday.

Items removed from Champaign schools' proposed cuts

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school board took several options for cutting its budget for next year off the table.

In a straw poll at its Monday night meeting, board members agreed to remove from consideration suggestions to:

– Cut one maintenance worker.

– Cut one enrichment position.

Schlarman Academy officials give updates on plans for new school

DANVILLE – As information has trickled out over the past few months about merging Danville's two Catholic grade schools and Schlarman High School to form Schlarman Academy, Michele Craig has faced a number of emotions.

Craig has three students at St. Paul's Grade School and works in the Catholic school system as well.

Partnership, technology help Washington School prepare magnet program

CHAMPAIGN – First-graders Cozaire Jackson and Narmeen Chahal were standing in front of a SMART Board in their classroom at Washington Elementary School last week, solving math problems.

Integration took a long time in some local communities

The racial challenges confronting schools today deal with achievement gaps and socioeconomic balance, but there was a time when the issues were more basic.

Black versus white schools.

Garden Hills' magnet program will strive to push independence

CHAMPAIGN – Children at Garden Hills Elementary School read "The Two Bobbies" this year, a true story about a dog and a blind cat that survived Hurricane Katrina, and after four months of wandering, were rescued by a shelter and eventually adopted.