Urbana plan would aid school project, housing agency

URBANA – A plan to convert a city-owned lot on Eads Street is intended to help Champaign schools redevelop Booker T. Washington School and help the local public housing authority expand a site in Urbana.

The lot at 1410 W. Eads St., U, will be discussed at an Urbana council study session at 7 p.m. Monday at the council chambers, 400 S. Vine St. The meeting will also include discussion on expansion of Olympian Drive.

Colangelo to deliver entrepreneurship lecture at UI

CHAMPAIGN – Jerry Colangelo, chairman of the Phoenix Suns and a former University of Illinois basketball standout, will return to campus April 8 to deliver the V. Dale Cozad Lecture in Entrepreneurship.

The speech is slated for 4 p.m. that day in the Deloitte Auditorium of the Business Instructional Facility at 515 E. Gregory Drive, C.

Colangelo, 70, has been associated with the Phoenix Suns since 1968 and has served as general manager, head coach, president, managing general partner and chief executive officer of the NBA team.

Comment sought on plan for University Avenue through C-U

URBANA – Public comment is being sought on the final draft of a study about University Avenue.

A plan for the corridor proposes locations for redevelopment along University Avenue, combining existing buildings with new development locations, landscaping improvements and existing and proposed parks and green spaces.

The planning began in the summer of 2008, according to Eric Halvorsen, planner for the Champaign County Regional Planning Commission.

UI trustee selection bill fails, but sponsor wants another shot

SPRINGFIELD – A bill that would have changed the way University of Illinois trustees are chosen failed in the Illinois House Wednesday, 69-44.

But one of its co-sponsors, Rep. Chapin Rose, R-Mahomet, said he will move to reconsider the vote. He claimed that minutes after the vote he had already persuaded eight lawmakers to switch from "no" to "yes" votes.

Uni High students vie for Obama as commencement speaker

Here are the essays written by University High School students hoping to win the White House “Race to the Top High School Commencement Challenge.”

In Danville, the SWAT team comes to teachers' rescue - willingly

DANVILLE – When Southwest Elementary School kindergartners need help reading, teachers call in the SWAT team.

When librarian Charlotte Whitington has a lot of books that must be shelved, the SWAT team comes to the rescue.

And when it's time to raise the flag each morning, whom does Principal John Hart count on? That's right, the SWAT team.

Urbana school district lays off more than 100

URBANA — The Urbana school district laid off 139 teachers and support staff Tuesday night -- nearly three times more than the number they normally lay off in the spring.

But this is not a normal year.

“All bets are off in terms of what happened in the past,” said Superintendent Preston Williams. “This is whole new territory.”

School launches project to encourage nonfiction reading

DANVILLE – When it comes to reading books, East Park Elementary School students frequently reach for fiction – particularly titles from the popular "Magic Tree House," "Junie B. Jones" and "Harry Potter" series.

Now they also reach for books on penguin chicks, Sacagawea and George Washington Carver thanks to a new Traveling Book Tub Project.

East Park officials used a Danville Public School Foundation grant to buy more than 400 nonfiction books for the project. They launched it last week after state testing wrapped up.

Grant to allow for 'green job' training at Parkland College

CHAMPAIGN – More than 1,000 area residents could get trained for "green jobs" as the result of a $375,000 grant to Parkland College.

Some of the money will be used to prepare unemployed and dislocated workers for careers as weatherization installers and technicians.

The rest will be used to train workers with construction, building or contracting experience to do wind, solar and geothermal retrofitting of homes and businesses.

Lakeview College sets open houses on both of its campuses

DANVILLE – Thinking about a career in nursing?

Lakeview College of Nursing will hold open houses on its two campuses from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday.

The campuses are at 309 N. Logan Ave., Danville, and on Eastern Illinois University's campus at 580 W. Lincoln Ave., Charleston. Both offer bachelor of science degrees in nursing.