Westville officials to shuffle funds until state aid arrives

WESTVILLE – School officials will move money around to make up for delayed income from the state and county.

School districts usually receive two general state aid payments each month. The Westville school district was scheduled to receive $240,000 in state aid last week, and another $240,000 next week.

Bismarck-Henning schools swap officials

BISMARCK – If you call Bismarck-Henning High School and get Scott Watson, don't think you dialed the junior high by mistake.

Earlier this month, school board members tapped Watson, previously the junior high principal, to lead the high school. They also selected Rusty Campbell, previously the high school's dean of students, to fill Watson's old post.

Urbana school board looks to state budget with questions

URBANA – As lawmakers in Springfield continued to debate budgetary matters, Urbana school board members and administrators started to discuss how those debates would affect the running of the district.

At the board's first study session of the new school year on Tuesday night, district business manager Carol Baker said Urbana had not received notice on some of the grants it usually hears about by this point.

Champaign officials want greater role in sports issues

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school district needs to assert more control over how new sports programs are created and administered, say school board members.

The board on Monday night approved an exploratory baseball program for Edison Middle School students for the fall season – which began Monday – with the conditions that the program is evaluated by the district and the use of volunteer coaches complies with the district's teacher contract.

Champaign support workers get new contract

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school board approved a contract for its support staff Monday evening that gives employees raises, substantially increases the school district's contribution to health insurance premiums and increases wages for the lowest-paid cafeteria workers.

Nearly 500 workers, including secretaries, maintenance and cafeteria workers, teachers aides and bus drivers, will get a 4 percent raise this year and a 4.25 percent raise for each of the next two years of the contract.

Georgetown officials vote to ask for a $200,000 loan

GEORGETOWN – School officials voted overwhelmingly Monday to seek a $200,000 loan from the state to replace the $200,000 payment to the district that has become entangled in the state's budget process.

Districts usually receive two general state aid payments each month. The Georgetown-Ridge Farm school district was scheduled to receive $200,000 in state aid next week and another $200,000 the following week.

There's nothing routine about going back to school

Luke Miller is not a morning person.

For a few weeks this summer, he lived a fairly carefree lifestyle that included staying up late and sleeping in the next day. But that came to an end the second week of July.

Then he had to get ready for the first grade.

Putting faces to the names

Seven Champaign schools will have new leaders in the principal's office as school starts this fall.

Some came from schools in northern Illinois, Peoria and Marshall. Others were already in administrative positions in the district. One is a graduate of the Champaign school system.

Champaign schools' support staff union ratifies new contract

CHAMPAIGN – The 400 or so staff of Champaign schools are one step closer to starting the school year with a new contract.

On Saturday morning, the Champaign Education Services Personnel Union voted by a 3-1 margin to ratify a new three-year contract, union president Tom Grimsey said.

Boosters to ask for permission to put up lights at soccer field

CHAMPAIGN – Central High School's boys' junior varsity soccer team never plays a full game at home. Later in the season, they sometimes don't get to play their scheduled games at all.

Their field, next to Franklin Middle School, has no lights. The players get out of their last hour of class to start the games by 4 p.m. The varsity team plays first, and then the junior varsity plays two 20-minute halves, rather than the regulation 30 minutes.