Group involved with equity issues tours Judah building

CHAMPAIGN – A Champaign school board member who toured the Judah Christian School building Wednesday said it has potential for use by the district, but he would not be interested in buying it unless black parents and community members support it.

Nathaniel Banks said the school board and the district need their input in deciding how to proceed.

Deputy school chief to take over Urbana's top job in July 2007

URBANA – Preston Williams Jr. will replace Gene Amberg as the Urbana schools superintendent as of July 2007.

At its regular school board meeting Tuesday night, the school board unanimously voted to approve Williams, now deputy superintendent, for the position, less than two weeks after Amberg announced his retirement in a year.

Urbana students spend summer preparing for next level

URBANA – For students in Urbana's Sankofa Connections program, "no more teachers, no more books" is no more the mantra of summer vacation.

These kids are working hard, learning math, reading, writing and social skills – and, for the most part, they wouldn't trade the experience, even for more traditional summer fun.

Farmer City residents fear loss of fairgrounds, track, park

FARMER CITY – Some Farmer City residents are beginning to fear the ramifications if the city council and the Farmer City Fair Association are unable to settle their impasse over the fate of the Farmer City fairgrounds and raceway and South Park.

The fair association leases the fairgrounds and raceway from the city, while the city leases the park from the fair association.

Parents put federal act to the test

CHAMPAIGN – A handful of concerned parents is forming a task force to look more closely at No Child Left Behind and how the federal act is affecting the Champaign school district.

Some of those parents say they are worried that hands-on, project-based learning is being sacrificed to prepare students for testing that will determine if they are learning the basic concepts mandated by state standards, and if schools and the district are making sufficient progress according to No Child Left Behind.

Union wants action taken on Tuscola principal

TUSCOLA – The Tuscola Education Association, which represents teachers in the Tuscola school district, filed a complaint on May 12 with the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board alleging that the district has been taking part in unfair labor practices.

According to a copy of the complaint obtained by The News-Gazette, school district representatives, including Tuscola High School Principal Kyle Ransom, allegedly have been interfering with, restraining and coercing union representatives since April 25, in violation of the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Act.

Researchers link stuttering to genetics

In the past, stuttering has been viewed and treated as a single disorder, but a series of University of Illinois studies is helping change that.

One study, entering its fifth year, is shedding light on different types of stuttering. Another is looking at variations in the structure of the brains of people who stutter.

Decision on Urbana school superintendent may come on Tuesday

URBANA – By Tuesday night, Preston Williams may be chosen as the next superintendent of Urbana public schools.

The school board will discuss and possibly vote on the position at its regular meeting at 7:30 p.m. in the Burkholder Administrative Service Center at 205 N. Race St., U.

Champaign school district takes look at Judah Christian

CHAMPAIGN – Champaign school district officials are looking into buying the Judah Christian School building.

Superintendent Arthur Culver toured the building at 908 N. Prospect Ave. Thursday, along with more than a half dozen other administrators, an engineer, and Mark Ritz of BLDD Architects, which worked with the district on its unsuccessful building bond proposal.

Police program holds graduation, marks 50 years

James Gentry, a graduate of the original class from the University of Illinois Police Training Institute, pinned an award on the uniform of the top student in this year's class, which marked 50 years of police training.

The historic graduation ceremony marked the culmination of a 12-week basic law enforcement training program for 63 police officers.