Parkland students become Tennessee volunteers

CHAMPAIGN – Parkland College dental hygiene students clean teeth at the college's clinic, but their work last weekend was different.

They worked at a faster pace than they were used to, in a temporary clinic set-up, with dentists they had just met. They did cleanings, assisted with tooth extractions (something not done at Parkland), and sterilized equipment, some of which was unfamiliar.

Five vie for three seats on Villa Grove school board

VILLA GROVE – Five candidates will be vying for three open seats on the Villa Grove school board this spring.

School board seats are elected from two districts. The Camargo Township district has one open seat and the district that covers outside of the township will have two openings to fill. School board representatives are elected to a four-year term.

Companies recalling products with peanuts

Two more companies have launched voluntary recalls of products containing peanuts due to potential salmonella contamination.

Both recalls are precautionary measures resulting from the recently expanded recall by Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) to include all peanut ingredients produced in its Blakely, Georgia facility.

Johnson angry about FutureGen project being listed as 'pork'

U.S. Rep. Tim Johnson, R-Urbana, said on Wednesday he was "outraged" that the FutureGen clean coal plant was included in a "pork" list compiled by his GOP colleagues of projects in the federal stimulus package, even though neither the House nor Senate bills specifically made reference to FutureGen.

CNN reported Tuesday that FutureGen was at the top of a list distributed by some congressional Republicans of 32 so-called "wasteful" programs in the economic stimulus bill.

Area music programs turning to concerts to raise funds

At Unity High School in Tolono, voices will lift in song – no instruments necessary.

At Urbana Middle School, a harmony of instruments will fill the air – no voices necessary.

Foundation awards grants to Oakwood school district teachers

OAKWOOD – The Oakwood Community Education Foundation will award grants on Friday to several teachers for innovative projects that would otherwise not be included in the district's budget.

Money will be awarded to the following teachers for the listed items:

Loan limit forces Danville schools committee to rethink plans

DANVILLE – While members of a committee studying the Danville school district's facilities ideally would like to replace North Ridge and South View middle schools with new buildings or one large middle school, they learned Wednesday that's not likely to be financially feasible.

Shanae Hinkle, the district's business and finance director, told the Facilities Review Committee that under Illinois law, the district can only borrow a maximum of $50 million based on the equalized assessed valuation of property within its boundaries.

This year's Community Day fundraiser starts Saturday

DANVILLE – Elder-Beerman through Bon-Ton Inc. will again hold a Community Day fundraiser, which will have an Education Week theme.

From Saturday through Feb. 14, groups such as East Park Elementary School, the Rossville-Alvin volleyball team, Mustard Seed of Faith Daycare, Danville High School wrestlers, the Oakwood United Methodist Youth Group and Lakeview School of Nursing will be at the store to sell coupon books for the upcoming special sale day on Feb. 28.

UI considers changes to tuition waiver policy

URBANA – The University of Illinois is considering changing the way it awards free tuition to graduate students, a move some graduate employees say could hamper academic quality on campus.

Under the current policy, if a graduate student has a 25 percent teaching appointment (based on a 40-hour work week, that's 10 hours a week), a tuition waiver is automatically generated.

Lincoln's Challenge Academy to stay in Rantoul

RANTOUL – Lincoln's Challenge Academy isn't going anywhere. The question now is, will it remain in existing buildings on the former Chanute Air Force Base or build a new facility?

Officials with the academy and the Illinois National Guard have reaffirmed their desire to keep the academy in Rantoul.