Champaign school district canceling annual summer camp

CHAMPAIGN – Champaign parents will have one less option for activities for their children next summer.

The Champaign school district will no longer provide its summer camp program for elementary students.

Savoy parents to explore their school options

SAVOY – Some Savoy parents are organizing neighborhood meetings in the next month to talk about getting an elementary school in Savoy.

The meetings are aimed at presenting information to residents and talking about options – including detachment from the Champaign school district and annexation to Tolono Unit 7.

Catlin school officials approve $2.07 million tax levy

CATLIN – School officials approved a $2.07 million tax levy for the upcoming year on Thursday – an increase of about $78,000 from the current levy.

Superintendent Guy Banicki said he expected the value of property within the district to drop about $400,000 to at about $40 million, so he anticipates that the tax rate will increase to generate that additional $78,000.

Westville school officials propose $2.26 million tax levy for 2008-09

WESTVILLE – School officials on Wednesday unveiled a proposed $2.26 million tax levy for the upcoming year with plans to approve it next month.

Superintendent Jim Owens said he estimated that the proposed levy would generate about $71,000 more than the current $2.19 million levy.

Failure of school board election proposals creates quandary

SIDELL – Ron Metzger went to bed on Election Day thinking that a ballot question asking whether voters wanted to change how Jamaica school board members are elected had passed.

It wasn't until this week that Metzger, the board president, learned it had failed; although more people voted "yes," it didn't pass in all seven congressional townships in the school district.

"It's a little disappointing," said Metzger, who supported the change that would have lifted voting restrictions and allowed voters to elect board members at large.

King Elementary cyclists get a rules roundup at bicycle rodeo

URBANA – If you're expecting lassoes and cowboy hats, you've come to the wrong place.

Instead, expect newly refurbished bicycles, helmets and accoutrements, and plenty of adults out to make sure kids know the two-wheeled rules of the road.

Police called to Jefferson Middle School to help quell fights

CHAMPAIGN – Champaign police were asked to intervene in two apparently unrelated student fights at Jefferson Middle School Wednesday.

Champaign police spokeswoman Rene Dunn said police were called to the school at 1115 S. Crescent Drive about 10 a.m., after two 13-year-old girls battered an assistant principal who had tried to break up a fight the teens were having.

Parkland trustee picked to lead national organization's board

CHAMPAIGN – Parkland College Trustee Tom Bennett has been named chairman-elect of the Association of Community College Trustees – the first community college trustee from Illinois to lead the national organization's board of directors.

Bennett said he's excited about the position, which is a volunteer one. Being on the organization's board of directors gives him the chance to talk with trustees from across the country to understand what issues and problems the community colleges share, he said.

Rantoul Township High School starts peer-mentoring program

RANTOUL – Rantoul Township High School has implemented a peer-mentoring program that administrators hope will ease the transition from junior high to high school.

Statistics from the first semester of the 2007-2008 school year showed that half of all suspensions had been served and half of all Fs had been earned by freshmen.

Unit 4 administrators to get raises

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school board voted Monday night to give district administrators a 4.5 percent pay raise for the current school year, the same amount teachers are getting.

Board President Dave Tomlinson said he hopes the pay increase will help reduce administrative turnover in the district. He said being able to attract quality administrators is "crucial."