Schools Spruce up Findlay

Photo by Mike Brothers
OVMS eighth grader Connor Wood and Shelbyville seventh grader Gabe Dove load mulch for Findlay park project.

•April 12, 2017•

Okaw Valley and Shelbyville Middle School students helped spruce up the village of Findlay April 7.

Jody McCormick, Findlay trustee and economic development coordinator, came up with community projects to help prepare the village park and downtown planters for spring activity, while also cleaning up around the village.

“This is a great opportunity to get together different communities and work hand in hand to complete projects where the kids can see it to completion,” McCormick said, noting she hopes to get involved when the co-op exchange goes to Shelbyville for a similar project in the future.

The chance for students from different schools to cooperate on community projects came from Findlay Middle School student council advisor Lou Maxedon. He explained that a discussion about community projects in cooperation with other schools was held at a recent workshop.

”When I discussed the possibility of student councils from Okaw Valley, Central A&M and Shelbyville working together on projects, middle school principal Ross Forlines agreed so we contacted Jody to help kick off the effort,” Maxedon said.

He explained that students from sixth-eighth grades were randomly selected to work in 12 groups at the park and downtown emptying planters and clearing trash in the business district. Read More

Sunday Crash Sends Driver to Hospital

Photo by RR Best
Early Sunday morning crash sends Sullivan man to hospital.

•April 12, 2017•

A 1:24 a.m. crash April 9 sent a Sullivan man to Carle Hospital with serious injuries.

Moultrie County Sheriff Chris Sims explained that deputies were called to 696 CR 1100N where the remains of a 2010 Hyundai coupe were sitting on its top five feet from a house.

The driver, Tyler J. Sesko, 24, Sullivan, was removed from the overturned vehicle by the Sullivan Fire And Rescue Squad, then transported to Carle. He was issued a ticket for reckless driving with the investigation open. Read More

Carriage Crossing Assisted Living’s Road To Reopen

•April 12, 2017•

By G. Ford
for the News Progress

Carriage Crossing Assisted Living Center located at 909 Green Mill Road in Arcola hosted a dinner and presentation on The 10 Warning Signs of Alzheimer’s Disease to announce the reopening of the assisted living and memory care facility.

Brenda Hearn, Executive Director of Carriage Crossing, expects the reconstruction and renovation to be completed within the next two weeks, followed by inspection and licensing by the state of Illinois.

The residents who were moved to other facilities last June will be returning, and the staff is currently scheduling tours for interested new residents.   Read More

Voters Reject Penny Sales Tax for Schools

•April 12, 2017•

By Mike Brothers

Sullivan school district’s proposition to raise funds for facilities with a one percent sales tax failed in Moultrie County 1851 to 1309 during the April 4 election.

Sullivan’s sales tax rate remains at 6.75 percent as a result of the vote. The proposed one percent increase could have generated $977,252 for county schools, with $499,850 as the CUSD 300 share.

Coles, Douglas, Champaign, Piatt, Macon, Christian and Shelby counties previously approved the sales tax. Sales tax rates range from 9.00% to 7.25% in those counties.

Seven candidates were seeking four open seats in the Sullivan CUSD #300 school board race. Ann Wheeler was appointed to replace Scott Atchison who resigned and was running to complete his term. Sitting members Mary Ann Wiley, Amy Fultz and Roger Bragg chose not to run. Read More

A Wonderful Day in the Neighborhood

Photo by Ellen Ferrera
Mr. Rogers science students learn how to make things float into the air.

•April 12, 2017•

By Ellen Ferrera
for the News Progress

It’s a wonderful day in the neighborhood - that neighborhood being Mr. Troy Roger’s seventh grade science class as they prepare to launch an experiment on which they have been working.

In the school atrium a large clutch of colorful balloons awaits as part of the experiment. Upstairs in the classroom Rogers explains that the 16 students have been watching the animated film, “Up” in which a grumpy old man attaches a bazillion balloons to his house and floats off to adventures.

The students have been challenged to estimate how many balloons it takes to lift their small popsicle house off the ground.

He started this experiment five years ago. Helium is expensive for the balloons so they are especially grateful to Ellen Bernius of the Flower Pot for her generous helium filled balloon donation for this learning experience.

This is a class project- Rogers makes the assignment and the rules while the students work together to construct the popsicle house, make the calculations, organize the balloons, etc.  Read More

ALAH FFA Members Compete in District 4 Proficiency Awards

Photo furnished
ALAH FFA Members Compete in District 4 Proficiency Awards
Janette Comstock, Makenna Green, and Colton Romine traveled to Sullivan March 8 to compete in the District 4 Proficiency Awards. Comstock was previously chosen as the Chapter and Section winner in diversified crop Production.
Romine was the Chapter and Section winner in vegetable production and
Green the Chapter and Section winner in grain production.
At the district level, FFA members are interviewed, not only by agriculture teachers, but by community members as well. Members compete against the section winners in the other four sections in District 4.
Romine and Green were selected as the District Four winners by a committee of agriculture industry representatives and teachers knowledgeable in this work-based area.
Receiving this honor made them eligible to compete in the State FFA Awards Selection process in Urbana-Champaign March 25. They will receive plaques which were made possible through gifts from individuals, businesses, corporations and organizations through the Illinois Foundation FFA.

SHS Students Conduct Research at Booth Library

Photo Submitted
SHS Students Conduct Research at Booth Library
Students from Sullivan High School visited Booth Library on the campus of Eastern Illinois University March 24.
The students were conducting research for AP English papers. They took a tour of the library and were given a demonstration on finding resources both on the bookshelves and through the library’s online database. During the spring semester, Booth Library’s regular hours are 8 a.m. to 1 a.m. Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and noon to 1 a.m. Sunday.
For more information on the library, visit the website,, call 581-6072 or find the library on Facebook or Twitter.

Sen. Rose Hosts Agents

Photo furnished
Sen. Rose Hosts Agents
State Sen. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) met with independent insurance agents from across his 51st Senate District March 29 at the Statehouse. The group was in Springfield for the Insurance Industry Legislative Day. Pictured from left to right: Dave Harby – Country Financial in Danville, Jay Peterson – Peterson Insurance Services, Inc. in Clinton, Dustin Peterson – Peterson Insurance Services, Inc. in Decatur, Brenda Niederbrach – Arlington/Roe in Decatur, Todd Henricks – Chapman-Henricks Insurance Agency, Inc. in Cerro Gordo, State Sen. Chapin Rose, Vicki Bishop – Country Financial in Tuscola, Elizabeth Houser – Country Financial in Sullivan, Rick Rotramel – Country Financial in Danville, Gary Mickle – New Horizons Financial Group in Mahomet, Scott Crawford – Country Financial in Georgetown.

Warren wins State FFA Proficiency Award

Photo furnished
Warren wins State FFA Proficiency Award
Sullivan High School FFA member Devin Warren has won the State FFA Diversified Crop Placement Proficiency Award.
FFA members considered for this award must demonstrate outstanding agricultural skills and competencies through record keeping, leadership, and scholastic achievement.
Specifically, students competing in this proficiency award area must show records of working for a crop producer who produces two or more different crops. Warren began learning about managing a successful crop enterprise at an early age as he started riding in the combine with his grandfather Frank Warren at the age of three.
Years of working alongside his grandfather has provided Devin with a wealth of experience which was showcased in his interviews at the section, district, and now the state finals.
As the state winner Warren, who is the son of Sherry Warren, will now represent Illinois in the National FFA Proficiency Award Semifinals this summer.