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  • Parent Category: News

Watseka #9 BOE votes to dismiss two teachers

Two Watseka Unit Nine teachers were dismissed (Thursday night) in a financial move by the Unit Nine School Board of Education.

Kris Lindquist’s teaching position at the Glenn Raymond School was eliminated in a Reduction in Force (RIF) move. Glenn Raymond P.E. teacher Dan Bleyle’s contract wasn’t renewed.
Several teachers attending the meeting asked the Board to reconsider the action to cut costs by finding other means . The Board contends the action is the result of doing what’s best for the future of the district.

Following a 90-minute closed session, the Board voted 6-0 to make the cuts. Board member Bob Burd abstained.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Herscher #2 teacher cuts fueled low enrollment

Herscher's Unit #2 School Board this week made three employment decisions which officials say will save the district $100,000.

The board eliminated a kindergarten teacher and high school math instructor because of a decline in enrollment. It also reduced a custodian position from full time to part time.

Superintendent Rich Decman said the district would rehire the kindergarten teacher should enrollment increase. The high school math teacher position could also be back in place if enrollment increases or another teacher moves from the district.

The numbers in the district during the past 16 years projects a few more years of decline before the student population levels off.

During the past five years, the district has cut staff and closed Reddick Elementary School to overcome a $3.6 million budget. Decman said the district likely will end this year with about a $250,000 deficit.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Dozens taken to hospitals with nausea, headaches at Bourbonnais school

Up to four-dozen people from the LeVasseur elementary school in Bourbonnais were taken to local hospitals Thursday afternoon after complaints of nausea and headaches.

Bourbonnais Fire Protection Chief Ed St. Louis said all but just a few were students. He said the problem appeared to be a back-up generator that malfunctioned, causing increased levels of carbon monoxide.

St. Louis said a contractor will inspect the school building. Classes and other activities are resuming today (Friday) after yesterday’s evacuation.

The fire department was called just after 1 pm when a couple dozen students and three other staff members became ill. Several students complained of headaches and nausea.

Those affected were treated at Presence St. Mary’s and Riverside Hospitals in Kankakee.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Ex-Con accused of sexually abusing Braidwood teenager

A 22-year-old ex-con was arrested in Braidwood (Wednesday night) after allegedly sexually abusing a 15-year-old for five months.

Jason Escalante was arrested and charged with three counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and one count of sexual exploitation of a child. When Escalante was arrested by authorities he had a 17-year-old girl in his car. Escalante is said to have sexually abused the 15-year-old from September to January. His bond was set at $200,000.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Update: Mobile Home fire kills one in Sheldon

The State Fire Marshall arrived at the scene of a fatal mobile home fire in Sheldon this (Thursday) morning. Investigators are looking over the ruins of the tragedy that left one of two occupants dead.

Iroquois County Coroner Bill Cheatum identifies the victim as 56-year-old Wayne Schwartz. Cheatum said the victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

A roommate was able to flee the structure without serious injury.

Sheldon Fire answered the call to 530 N. Second Street at 6:14 am. Mutual aid came from Concord and Donovan. Firemen found the mobile home engulfed in flames and smoke.

The roommate was awakened when he heard yelling for help, but the smoke was too much for any rescue.

94.1 WGFA