Peer Ambassadors set meeting on juvenile justice system

CHAMPAIGN – A town-hall meeting organized by young people for their peers to discuss the juvenile justice system in Champaign County is planned for Sept. 25.

The event will be held at Salem Baptist Church, 500 E. Park St., C, and is being organized by the Peer Ambassadors, a program of the Mental Health Center of Champaign County.

Head Start/Early Head Start gets rave reviews in federal report

Champaign County's Head Start/Early Head Start comes off well in a federal monitoring report released this week.

Every three years, federal Head Start officials perform lengthy analyses of operations. The local Head Start, administered by the Champaign County Regional Planning Commission, achieved full compliance in nine of 10 areas.

Westville High group to present first stage musical, 'Cinderella'

The Westville High School theater arts company will present its first musical production, Rodgers and Hammerstein's "Cinderella," at 7 p.m. Nov. 8 and 3 p.m. Nov. 9 in the high school's Old Gym, 918 N. State St.

Choral teacher Teresa Ross says she is excited about her students having the opportunity to perform on a local stage, since some have been involved with the Red Mask Players and Danville Light Opera in the past.

Organizing Krannert's opening-night party a true team effort

There are eight days to go before the opening-night party at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, and Lisa Lillig is at her computer and telephone, taking care of final details.

She calls the eight restaurants that will sell food at the bash Thursday night, discovering, to her dismay, that two planned to bring hummus.

"You don't want that," she says. "You want all the food to be different. You don't want one person to have hummus for $4 and another for $1, and one person's hummus to be better than the other's."

Centennial's high enrollment creates a class-size struggle

CHAMPAIGN – At the start of the school year, all three of the history classes Greg Stock teaches to Centennial High School seniors had 30 or more students.

He wasn't alone. Many of his colleagues had classes of well over 30 students. Having that many in a class affects discussions and how much writing and document analysis can be done, Stock said. It affects the amount of grading a teacher must do and the available space in the classroom, with more desks, but more importantly, whether students can get the help they need.

Agency's chief diagnoses ills of health care across Illinois

Wonder what health care issues most concern the medical profession?

In the following report, Dr. Shastri Swaminathan, president of the Illinois State Medical Society, talks to The News-Gazette about what's on doctors' legal and legislative agendas right now.

Wheelchair racer's second chance turns to gold

In a contest that had defied prediction, Amanda McGrory raced into a gold medal-win.

On Sept. 8, the University of Illinois student-athlete and wheelchair racer was hurtling along in her 5,000 meter race when there was a bad crash, according to a press release from the Paralympic Division of the U.S. Olympic Committee An official stepped into the lane to assist and McGrory had to slow down.

Champaign school board set to tackle budget

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school district is in good financial shape, even though its budget of nearly $100 million for the current school year has a $1.8 million deficit, says Gene Logas, the chief financial officer for the district.

Scouts at jamboree set to talk with space station astronauts

RANTOUL – Can you hear me now?

Boy Scouts attending this weekend's Boy Scout Jamboree will speak to some special long-distance "guests." Space travelers orbiting the Earth in the International Space Station will be linked up to speak with the Scouts on Saturday morning, Sept. 13.

Magnet schools idea tops Champaign school board agenda

CHAMPAIGN – The Champaign school district would rebuild Washington Elementary School and add more space at Garden Hills Elementary School, with the goal of making each a magnet school, under a recommendation to be made to the Champaign school board Monday.

The proposed project would allow the school district to meet its consent decree requirement to add more elementary seats in north Champaign. The school district will also be working with the Champaign park district.