Catlin schools looking at deep, wrenching budget cuts

CATLIN – Superintendent Gary Lewis said Thursday that school officials would look at ways of cutting hundreds of thousands of dollars from the district budget in the coming weeks due to the uncertainty of payments from the state.

The Catlin school district is currently owed about $207,000 from the state, and Lewis said he is looking to cut about 10 percent of the district's budget next year by eliminating expenses, staff and programs.

"This is the worst part of this job," Lewis said. "This will affect people's lives."

Danville school board hears more details on 2 new 'upper houses'

DANVILLE – Danville school board members on Wednesday learned more details of the proposals for the ACE and GLOBAL upper houses, including their pricetags.

Champaign school board barely approves reform plan

CHAMPAIGN – A restructuring plan for Centennial High School was narrowly approved by the Champaign school board Monday night.

But board members say they want to see changes in the plan.

The plan provides a framework for reforming the high school. It was required after Centennial failed to make adequate yearly progress under the federal No Child Left Behind act for five years in a row.

One of the things some board members objected to was a new position to be created at the high school.

PBL grad coming home for speech about flying cars

Chamber to host Terrafugia exec at annual meeting

Paxton-Buckley-Loda graduate Samuel Schweighart will be the featured speaker at the annual meeting of the Paxton Area Chamber of Commerce on Feb. 18 at Lakeview Country Club in Loda.

Schweighart is vice president for engineering of Terrafugia, a company he co-founded with several fellow students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Terrafugia's goal is to provide innovative solutions to the challenges facing personal aviation.

More details for Danville school board on high school proposals

DANVILLE – Danville school board members on Wednesday learned more details of the proposals for the ACE and GLOBAL upper houses, including their pricetags.

Ex-House speaker stops at UI to talk technology, agriculture

URBANA – Dennis Hastert has kept busy since retiring as speaker of the U.S. House three years ago.

Besides serving as an adviser to a Washington law firm, the 68-year-old Republican has worked internationally on behalf of Naperville lighting company PolyBrite International and the Iowa-based Howard R. Green Co. He's also on the board of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Two new 'upper house' proposals ready for Danville High School

DANVILLE – A new student-centered program infusing arts and creativity into core subjects. Another where students study a global topic at home and throughout the world.

New courses including drama, photography and sports and entertainment marketing, and the latest technology to support those projects and activities.

These are some of the ideas that Danville High School staff and students hope will take flight in the ACE and GLOBAL "upper houses," starting next school year.

Several on Champaign school board say they're against cutting music

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school board saw an expanded list of possible budget cuts, and ways to increase revenue, for the coming year on Monday night.

The board began talking about how to make more than $2 million in budget cuts in late January, and asked the administration for more options.

The board has heard the most public comment on the proposal included in the first list of possible budget cuts – to eliminate elementary band and strings. Several board members said they were not in favor of cutting the program.

Georgetown-Ridge Farm school board OKs bond sale to generate cash

GEORGETOWN – School officials voted Monday to sell about $2 million in bonds to generate money for the district and to restructure some older, higher-interest bonds.

Search for dean for UI's College of Media on hold indefinitely

URBANA – Bleak financial conditions at the University of Illinois could be partly to blame for calling off a job search for the dean in the media college.

"I do not believe it is appropriate to appoint a new dean for the College of Media at this time," Richard Wheeler, interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, wrote in an e-mail to faculty Monday.