July 23, 2014

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Sen. Durbin visits Beardstown PDF Print E-mail

By Kim Watson
For the Star-Gazette
U.S. Senator Dick Durbin, the second-ranked Democrat in the United States Senate, stopped in Beardstown for a visit at Yesterday’s Café on March 22.  Durbin greeted a group of residents and addressed some pressing issues of the community, the state and nation.
Durbin listened to local issues including funding for schools, the marina project and a decreased tax base. It was commented that Beardstown has a unique situation that many school districts do not have. Beardstown has 78 percent of the children in the district in free or reduced lunch programs. It was said during the discussion that the cultural diversity is unlike most other school districts downstate, with these differences making it more difficult to provide the services that are needed.

 
Fire department hosts gas and electrical safety workshop PDF Print E-mail

By Kim Watson
For the Star-Gazette
Beardstown Fire Department hosted a natural gas and electrical safety workshop last week, funded by Ameren. The Beardstown Fire Department was filled with approximately 80 participants which included staff from fire, police, ambulance and first responders from Beardstown and surrounding areas.

 
U of I Extension is April Co-Business of the Month PDF Print E-mail

The University of Illinois Extension, Cass County Office is the April 2014 Co-Business of the Month! The University of Illinois Extension is the “flagship outreach effort of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.” They offer educational programs in four key areas: 4H Youth Development, Agriculture and Natural Resources, Community and Economic Development, and Food and Nutrition. Front row: Brenda Robinson--Office Support Assistant, Dustin Fritsche--Community and Economic Development Coordinator
Back row: April Littig--Youth Development Coordinator, Tanya Hetelle--4-H Program Coordinator, Aaron Dufelmeier--County Extension Director, Ken Johnson--Horticulture Educator. (Submitted photo)

 
School program cuts discussed at Policy Committee meeting PDF Print E-mail

By Sandra Haschemeyer
Star-Gazette editor
A lot of questions were asked and a lot of issues brought up but few answers were given during a meeting of the Beardstown School Board's policy committee held last Thursday to discuss the process for reinstating clubs and middle school sports that have been cut from the budget. Members of the Tiger Nation Booster Club, a group formed to help raise funds for deactivated programs and clubs, were present.
The next step will be a meeting between representatives of the board and the teachers' union, scheduled for April 22 and 23, to discuss the possibility of decreased stipends for coaches and club sponsors. The question will be whether the stipends can be legally re-negotiated and, if so, whether decreased stipends will be accepted. This will be a starting point to help determine how much money will be needed to reinstate the cut activities, said Brittney Taylor, Tiger Nation president.

 
Meredosia-Chambersburg School Board reviewing options PDF Print E-mail

By Sandra Haschemeyer
Star-Gazette editor
The Meredosia-Chambersburg Board of Education took no action on a proposal to close the elementary school in Meredosia and move those students to the high school building during a meeting held April 2.
The board will go back to the drawing board, Superintendent Ron Gilbert said, and consider all possibilities before making any decisions. Regarding a restructuring plan, there are many factors to consider such as facility repairs, age of the building, and how feasible it is to have all students under one roof. There is space available at the high school, but renovations will be needed to make it work better, Gilbert said.
The elementary building has 137 students in kindergarten through fifth grade. There are 106 students in grades 6-12.

 
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