Crisis Nursery program helps moms with perinatal woes

Mykayla Thomas came into the world with an umbilical cord wrapped around her neck, survived on feeding tubes for several days and spent almost a week in neonatal intensive care.

Her mom had to wait two long days before she could hold her newborn.

Little wonder those days were stressful for April Browder, then an 18-year-old single mom. Too worried to eat or sleep, she lost her pregnancy weight – and then some – within a few weeks.

"It was very scary," says Browder, now 21.

As the birth of her second child, Clayton, approached last fall, Browder sought help from the Crisis Nursery of Champaign County. Family specialist Cherylanda Trice told her about a new program for moms at risk of perinatal depression.

Boys & Girls Club of Danville to be open for school break

DANVILLE –The Boys & Girls Club of Danville will open for the Northeast Elementary Magnet School spring break from March 13 through April 13 for Northeast students only.

Hours will be 7:45 a.m. to 6:15 p.m. The cost for non-members is $150, which must be paid in full at the time of registration.

Champaign school assignments may be based on family income

CHAMPAIGN – The way children get assigned to elementary schools in Champaign could get a shake-up come Monday.

If approved by the board, family income will replace race as a factor in schools-of-choice decision-making.

Lawyer unsure if closed Danville meeting broke the law

DANVILLE – A lawyer with the Illinois Attorney General's Office said that whether or not a Danville school district advisory committee violated the Open Meetings Act on Wednesday depends on who has control over it – the administration, or a public body such as the school board.

"It's not an easy area to define," said Heather Kimmons, an assistant public access counselor with the attorney general's office in Springfield.

Schlarman students document Danville's traffic hazards

DANVILLE – Some Schlarman High School juniors are raising awareness about safe driving among their peers – and might win some money for their post-prom activities.

The students are participating in the Illinois Department of Transportation's "Operation Teen Safe Driving" campaign, sponsored by Ford and Allstate. The campaign aims to get young drivers involved in helping to reduce teen crashes and fatalities.

Firm spells out lower estimates for renovations to Danville schools

DANVILLE – A committee studying the Danville school district's options for addressing three outdated schools on Wednesday heard more palatable estimates for renovating the buildings.

Committee's closed session upsets Danville school board members

DANVILLE – A committee studying the Danville school district's options for addressing three outdated schools angered some school board members on Wednesday when it went into closed session to discuss its recommendations.

"I think you're making a huge mistake for a lot of reasons," said board member Dan Brown, who attended the committee's third study session along with board members Judd Peck, Bill Dobbles, Greg Hilleary and Gina McGuire, a couple of administrators and reporters. Brown said he was as interested in their thought process as in their recommendation.

Bills address concerns about credit card offers

During his freshman year at the University of Illinois, Vikram Chaudhery was handed a coupon for a free sandwich.

When he arrived at the shop, he learned he had to apply for a credit card in order to get that free sub.

No sub for Chaudhery that day.

Danville High students knocking 'em dead in murder mystery

DANVILLE – Nancy Henderson can't remember when exactly she agreed to direct plays featuring Danville High School students, but she's certain about how much she enjoys the task.

"I don't teach at the high school, so it's nice to come here and talk to kids on a more adult level at the end of the work day," said Henderson with a laugh. Her days are spent teaching 3-, 4- and 5-year-olds at East Park Elementary School.

Read Across America aims to sell kids, parents on literature

URBANA – Gloria Arizaga's children have attended Read Across America Day since before they could read, before they could even speak much English.

But it hardly mattered. As her family moved around the room filled with people reading and games for children from toddlers to preteens four years ago, they fell in love with the event.