In 1856, Abraham Lincoln made a speech at a church on West Urbana's North First Street, now the site of the Champaign police station, backing the first Republican presidential candidate, John C. Fremont.
Fremont didn't win, of course, but four years later, Lincoln was the first Republican president. The church was popularly known as the Goose Pond church because the Illinois Central railroad had filled in such a pond and donated the land to the church.
DANVILLE – Danville Area Community College students are looking at a "preliminary" $5-per-credit-hour tuition increase this year.
On Tuesday, trustees discussed a proposed hike that would bring the cost of in-district tuition to $79 per credit hour. The universal fee for technology and activities would remain at $10.
VILLA GROVE – School improvement plans for the current school year at the high school and elementary school were presented and approved at the Villa Grove school board meeting Monday night.
Elementary school Principal Marke Hatfield said the elementary grades will keep a lot of the same goals pertaining to math and reading, since test scores have been fairly high in those areas.
URBANA – Former Urbana school district superintendent Gene Amberg was found guilty of failure to report suspicions of child abuse to the Department of Children and Family Services.
In a stipulated bench trial Monday, Judge John Kennedy found the evidence sufficient to prove Amberg, 58, of Urbana guilty of failure to report to DCFS suspicions that Jon White enga- ged in conduct with female students designed to satisfy the former Thomas Paine Elementary School teacher's sexual urges.
GEORGETOWN – School officials approved graduation dates for the high school and junior high school on Monday.
Georgetown-Ridge Farm High School seniors will graduate at 2 p.m. on May 17. Mary Miller Junior High School eighth-grade students will graduate at 7 p.m. on May 21. Both ceremonies will take place in the high school gymnasium.
The Champaign school board voted to extend Superintendent Arthur Culver's contract for one additional year following a 3½-hour closed-session evaluation Monday night.
His contract now goes to 2013.
The vote was 4-3, with board members Arlene Blank, Greg Novak and Dave Tomlinson voting no.
DANVILLE – Danville school board members will discuss Wednesday what to with the district's warehouse facility at 131 N. Jackson St.
Buildings and Grounds Director George Schildt said extensive repairs are needed on the exterior brickwork, windows and iron lintels, and the building needs a new roof and boiler. Work has been estimated at more than $750,000.
CHAMPAIGN – As the Champaign Public Library's bookmobile pulled into the Shadow Wood Mobile Home Park on Monday afternoon, there were already three youths, arms full of books and videos, waiting.
Two young mothers who live in the north Champaign mobile home park, just off Market Street, were waiting with them.
URBANA – Former Urbana school district superintendent Gene Amberg admitted in criminal court that he mishandled reports of abuse by a former grade school teacher against his students.
In a stipulated bench trial Monday, Judge John Kennedy found there was evidence to prove Amberg, 58, of Urbana, guilty of failure to report suspected abuse to the Department of Children and Family Services suspicions that Jon White engaged in conduct with female students designed to satisfy the former Thomas Paine Elementary School teacher's sexual urges.
OAKLAND – The 340 flags flapping in the wind were Larry Eckhardt's gift.
And he lined the streets of Oakland with them to pay tribute to a hometown hero he had never met.