School Physicals Clinic – Champaign Park District CU Day

Here is an announcement from Sheri Williamson for a “School Physicals Clinic”

Attached are flyers for two upcoming school physicals clinics being coordinated with the Champaign Park District. The clinics will be held during CU Days at Douglass Park.


The two clinics who have assisted with organizing these clinics should also be sending along flyers for their clinics. If you could also have their flyers available at registration I would appreciate it. Their clinic hours and services would be accommodating to parents and caregivers. The two clinics are Champaign County Christian Health Center and the University of Illinois HeRMES medical group.

School Physicals Clinic Flyer – Version 2 – Spanish

School Physicals Clinic Flyer – Version 2


A school physicals clinic will be hosted during the Champaign Park District’s Champaign-Urbana Days. The clinic will include:

  • School Physicals
  • Sports Physicals
  • Immunizations
  • Dental Exams (Saturday only)

Champaign-Urbana Public Health will be providing immunizations and dental exams. Parents must bring their students’ immunization records to the clinic in order to receive immunizations. A list of immunizations is provided on the back of this flyer. Illinois requires that all children in grades Kindergarten, 2nd, and 6th have a dental exam.

Where: Douglass Park
Date: Friday, August 8th / 7:00-8:30pm
Saturday, August 9th / 11:00am-3:00pm
To make an appointment call Sheri Williamson (217) 721-6540
Walk-ins will be accepted, but appointments will be given priority
**Medical forms will be provided at the clinic**

"Students Are Masterpieces And Teachers Are Their Conductors"

Sheri asked that I share this from her Resources blog:


I wanted to share this thought. I was watching a movie today with my daughter. The movie spanned the decades, touching on historical moments that our changed society. Americans developed from those moments. Wars, presidents, and culture. But at the heart of the movie was one of the spokes within that system of wheels that influenced how our communities grew: teachers.

At the end of the movie, after watching the main character find his way through his teaching career, there is an event to honor him. One of his former students gives this message:

Mr. Holland had a profound influence on my life and on a lot of lives I know. But I have a feeling that he considers a great part of his own life misspent. Rumor had it he was always working on this symphony of his. And this was going to make him famous, rich, probably both. But Mr. Holland isn’t rich and he isn’t famous, at least not outside of our little town. So it might be easy for him to think himself a failure. But he would be wrong, because I think that he’s achieved a success far beyond riches and fame. Look around you. There is not a life in this room that you have not touched, and each of us is a better person because of you. We are your symphony Mr. Holland. We are the melodies and the notes of your opus. We are the music of your life.

The same can be said of each of our teachers. Our children are molds. And each teacher leaves an imprint on them. Looking back at my own years K-12 there were teachers who always had a smile on their faces. Their tones were always sweet. Their instruction always nurturing. I may not remember exactly what information they taught me, but I know I wanted to learn in their classrooms. There were teachers who just through hallway interactions could brighten your day. And there were teachers who got you hooked on a subject, so much so, that your college application was written on the foundation they created with you.

I know the arguments are about money. And that’s truly unfortunate. That our students are affected by money. Sure they may not have a clear appreciation of how money is the focal point of the current negotiations… and we should be thankful for that. Because what would they say if they really understood? Some parents don’t even understand why the issue is being contested. I wish I could say “money aside,” but no one can say that. What I can say is that the same teachers we are leaving in limbo are the same ones who have never faltered in their mission to serve our students. They have come to work without a contract and taught our children. To those who think this is about money to them… it’s clearly not.

While we may not all agree on the outcome of this situation, I encourage parents to share their thoughts about this situation. All your thoughts, good or bad. You’re welcome to share in comments on this post or via email ( For those sharing via email I would like to post your message on my blog, omitting the name of the sender.

One voice may create a stir, but many voices will create a storm.

Regular board meeting tonight

Agenda for tonight:

  1. Call to Order
    1. Roll Call
  2. Agenda
    1. Approval of Agenda (Items may not be considered in the same order as the agenda)
  3. Executive Session – 5:30 p.m.
  4. Recognitions
    1. Recognitions
  5. Public Comments
    1. Public Comment on Agenda & Non-Agenda Items
  6. Communications
    1. Communications from CFT
    2. Communications from CESP
    3. Communications from PTA Council
    4. Communications from Board Members
  7. Informational Items
    1. Upcoming Events
  8. Reports: New Business
    1. Middle School After School Programming/40North Grant: Angela Smith This item has files attached
    2. Engaging Solutions Presentation: Matt Foster This item has files attached
    3. Preliminary FY14 Budget Presentation: Matt Foster This item has files attached
  9. Action Agenda: New Business
    1. Administrative Appointment: Ken Kleber
    2. Bills and Treasurer’s Report – August: Matt Foster This item has files attached
    3. Promises Made, Promises Kept Committee: Dr. Judy Wiegand
    4. Approval of Robeson Change Order No. 3: Matt Foster This item has files attached
    5. Approval of Robeson Change Order No. 4: Matt Foster This item has files attached
    6. Approval of Carrie Busey Change Order No. 20: Matt Foster This item has files attached
    7. Approval of the Contract for Sale of Real Estate – 801 Pioneer St./806 Dennison St.: Tom Lockman
  10. Consent Agenda – New/Unfinished Business
    1. Motion to approve the Consent Agenda – New Business
    2. Human Resource Changes: Ken Kleber This item has files attached
    3. Minutes of August 5, 2013 and August 12, 2013
    4. Policy 415.07/R Minority and Female Business Enterprise Goals: Tom Lockman This item has files attached
    5. Policy 720.11R Exemption From Physical Activity: Tom Lockman This item has files attached
    6. Policy 415.06 – Vendor Relations: Tom Lockman This item has files attached
    7. FY14 Consolidated Grant Application to Serve Limited English Proficient (LEP) Students: Maria Alanis This item has files attached
  11. Executive Session
    1. Motion to move to Executive Session
  12. Open Session
    1. Reconvene in open session for possible action on items discussed in closed session.
  13. Adjournment
    1. Motion to adjourn the meeting.
  14. Future Meetings
    1. Special Meeting: September 23, 2013, Regular Meeting: October 14, 2013, Special Meeting: October 28, 2013, Regular Meeting: December 9, 2013


Based on what transpired last week in terms of Kenwood, the discouragement of parents paying for PTA activities and the PTA Council, I expect there to be some comments during Public Comment and the timeslot for the PTA Council.


There are a number of line items dealing with a focus on minorities and women in the workplace (ie, 8.2, 10.4).


Sheri Williamson (PTA Council) and R. Scott Davis (CFT) being added to the PMPK committee (9.3).


9.7, the District is seeking approval to buy two properties for the Bus Garage. The Satellite view of google maps gives a good idea of what the area looks like, including the busses parked across the street. This was previously discussed in Executive (Closed) session.


In 10.7, we get to see a preliminary FY 2014 budget. I encourage you to read it and try to wrap your head around it; it is important that we start to ask questions. Now. I say that as a way to entice stakeholders to understand what all the numbers mean – I know I don’t.


There are a number of other things. I don’t fully understand or follow all the various change orders. There is a part of me scratching my head on why we need so many change orders. Also, I just happened to browse the online check register and noticed that we sent another %5750 to Dr. Alves last month even though his contract expired in May or June. The discussion of the Choice RFP is not on the agenda at all.


What catches your attention?


Champaign PTA Council now on Facebook and Twitter

The Champaign PTA Council recently stepped into social media and can now be found on Facebook and Twitter:


twitter:  (@champaignpta)


From Vice President Sheri Williamson:

Yep. I’ve started working more on the Twitter account and the Facebook page. We’ll be using social media to aid us in promoting the different initiatives we’re working on such as parent workshops and student activity nights.
We hope to get more families following us on social media as we want to also use Facebook and Twitter to talk to parents about all sorts of things… changes they’d like to see, ideas they have, questions, etc. For instance, Dr. Wiegand has agreed to incorporate our idea for a town hall meeting into her Supper with the Superintendent events. We’ll post dates, times, locations for those events as we hear from Unit 4. Parents can then submit questions to via Twitter and Facebook that we can then pass along to Dr. Wiegand to be answered at her next Supper. Questions would be posted as a PTA question, not from any parent in particular. We hope that encourages parents to submit questions and concerns they have.
Lots going on. And we would love to have district parents involved in all of it!

Notes from the April 22nd BOE Special Meeting

I took the time to watch the BOE meeting a little while ago and typed up some notes. Unfortunately, they are not yet formatted very well. Instead of delaying, I finally decided to just dump them here, and hope that readers will forgive the horrid formatting.


{the times listed below are elapsed times from the beginning of the video}

start at 5:02

spotlight on middleschool to highschool transitions: 10 minutes (music stops at 15:36 after all the credits roll *roll eyes*)
jamar brown – found it entertaining, found the whole thing very good, transitions are important

public comment:
laurie bonnett – only quotes from one vendor, are we reaching out and seeking participating from other vendors?

Cathy mannen – thanks to the board for support of the early childhood center.

PTA Council:
Sheri Williamson – summer reading program, 300 books from UofI. Parent Resource Group.

Communications from board members:
Kristine – shout out about the amazing musicals past two weeks. Big praise for the stage design, acting, music, etc.
Van Ness – College Career Center; great facility, great idea. Shout out for the CUSF. Need to support them better.
Ileana – Make the College Career Center grow bigger – good stuff.
Brown – PSUs (?) at Novak, like a graduation thing. Lots of praise/congrats for many other events at other schools.
Stig – congrats to those who run board elections. Interesting thoughts about “supporting” more folks on future candidates, getting more folks to run.
Board retreat follow-up: how to make the school district a family-centered organization. hmm… not child-centered? 🙂

Asia Fuller-Hamilton & Joe Williams start with Transitions.
Jamar and Kristine mention how awesome this is. Kristine reiterates the pain/confusion of the first day. Mentions how awesome it would be for every freshman to have a mentor/guide. Joe says they are working on it.
Stig asks the same about middle school. He says why can’t we divulge as much information as possible BEFORE they come to school, and then handle the unknowns as they arise. A bit of discussion (even Wiegand intercedes); can the kids have the data before the first day of school? 🙂 Lots of great things are happening in pockets, working towards making those things consistent in general.

Elizabeth DeGruy (no presentation, just reporting).
Stig asks a lot of questions and makes comments. Very engaged. 🙂 Again, can parents have as much information as soon as possible? All about transistions. Importance of setting a first impression by making the first day in school a very positive one.
I think a question from the audience was fielded about “child time”? Yes, Sheri Williamson from the audience is given the floor. Awesome! 🙂

Tony and Cheryl are up at 1:05:40. Tony walks through the overview of the goals and “ideal reality”. Cheryl talks about the specific multiple recommendations. Elizabeth chimes in with SpecEd recommendations.
Stig asks how parents who are in these situations can reach out to a person (*not* a helpline). Maybe a FAQ?
Action Items:
Kleber announces the promotion of 3 assistant principals.
TALP – Orlando Thomas
Kristine wants to verify this is not fun, and that students don’t really have a choice once suspended.
student discipline procedure – lockman
confirming adoption for administrative reasons … ?? That’s not vague. 🙂

Kleber on adding an administrative position for overseeing the food department; one year appointment for a proof-of-concept.
Van Ness asks where the person will be housed. Kleber doesn’t really answer the question, saying they will be “everywhere.” Interesting that the Board is asked to approve the position even before the job description is finalized. Doesn’t that seem backwards?
Item A from Consent Agenda moved up – Champaign Telephone contract. curious, was this moved up in Executive session? Meg Dickinson mentioned that Phil Van Ness moved on it, but I did not witness it.
Brown asks, we will *never* bid out these jobs? Joe Davis assures the board that if they need to, they will. Who bids it out? “talk it out” with architects and superintendent.
Van Ness comes out and says he pulled it out of the Consent Agenda. Wants to make sure the board is putting things before the public. Likes that we are keeping this local.
Kristine mentions that consistency is very important.
Ileana: not exactly sure what she said, something about good for the community and taxpayers knowing.
Kristine, we don’t want everyone to know what the budget is….. interesting. In the context of bidding… they want contractors to bid competitively, not to the budget.

1:44:40 remaining items of the consent agenda

Mental Health Forum Tonight! (via the PTA Council) – CANCELLED


The Unit 4 PTA Council is holding a 2nd mental health forum. As Panelists will again discuss programs they offer to parents, families, and adolescents. We will continue the discussion regarding how organizations can collaborate with the district to improve families’ access to services. Panelists will also be available to answer questions.
The hope is that this will be an ongoing discussion within the district and community to ensure individual, family, and community safety.
Mental health is an important element of everyday life. By promoting mental health awareness we can work together to educate our families, remove stigmas, and safeguard our families so that tragedies do not occur in our community. Please join us for this discussion!

March 5, 2013 6 – 7:30 p.m.
Mellon Building 703 S. New St.
Board Room

Any questions can be directed to Sheri Williamson:
PTA Council Vice-President
Panelists will include:
Community Elements Access Initiative Carle Child Diagnostic Clinic Melanie Sivley, Private Practice Prairie Center Crosspoint Services east-Central Illinois Safe Schools Alliance Pavilion Behavioral Center


UPDATE: This event has been moved to April 6th.

February Mental Health Forum – Unit 4

A quick notice from Sheri Williamson. For those wondering about “mental health” and why it is important, I will be posting more about it in the next month or two.


The next mental health forum is Thursday, February 21, 2013 from 7-8pm in board room at the Mellon Building. Parents will again be invited to attend, but a strong emphasis has been placed on Unit 4 administrators, staff, and faculty attending. Dr. Wiegand and her executive team of assistant superintendents will be in attendance. They must be a part of the conversation as well. I would like for them to hear the same information that was presented at the January meeting. Some ideas have already been discussed and actions have been taken to begin consideration and even implementation. I believe there are still more ways that collaboration can occur and would love to have a 2nd opportunity to discuss those options. This is not only about services for youth as early intervention is my primary goal, but also about services for families. Please send this out to parents at your schools. I would love to see a strong turnout with parents as well. Let me know if you can attend.


PTA Council hosting special topic on mental health

Meg Dickinson wrote a short article about Sheri Williamson’s effort to get folks talking and thinking about mental health:


Sheri has been very active in organizing resource fairs in and around the schools and has a passion to bridge the gap between parents and resources.

Two meetings tonight: which one will you choose?

Tonight, we have not one but two meetings! 🙂 I have talked about the Board Meeting and the agenda. In addition, Sheri Williamson is kicking off the first Parent Advisory Group.

Monday, September 24th @ 6pm at Stratton Elementary School

“What is YOUR ideal school setting for your children? What is your ideal environment for your community?
I am a current co-chair of the PTA Council Vice-Presidency seat. I am working on establishing a parent-advisory group to work with the faculty, staff, and PTAs at each school. After speaking with Dr. Wiegand, the Unit 4 superintendent, this type of collaboration can allow for a productive facilitation between parents and school administrators regarding changes at schools. The parent-driven group can focus on issues the community has faced, such as bullying, gun violence, stranger danger, literacy, and any other topic parents feel is worth discussing. A parent-driven group can offer support and advocate for parents in need. It can also brainstorm ways to provide more cost-efficient services to Unit 4 families.
Working with local organizations I will be holding parent cafes at a different Unit 4 school each month during the school year. At the first meeting the goal is to identify priority topics that parents would like addressed by the district. We need your voice to help create positive change in the district and in the community!
The first meeting is Monday, September 24th. Come enjoy a free meal from Texas Roadhouse!”

Possible Topics for Discussion
Gun Violence
Stranger danger
Youth Social Trends

Contact Information
Sheri Williamson

This Saturday, Resource Fair at BTW

Sheri Williamson has been hard at work working with the school district administration, school officials, volunteers and local service providers to help bring the Resource Fair to Unit 4 again. The school district has a nice flyer up on their page (also syndicated by Will Kyles):

Sheri is also passing out the Spanish version:

SP Resouce Day Flyer – September

Also, Sheri is working hard with others to form a Parent Advisory Committee. The first meeting will be Monday September 24th from 6:pm to 7:pm. And yes, that does overlap the U4 Board’s “Public Hearing on the Budget”, unfortunately. I will provide more information about this new Parent Advisory Committee shortly (I have a spanish flyer but still looking for the english one) – the details of the group are a little in flux, but there is a lot of cool discussions happening. Just to drop a teaser, this new group will also have some element of parent advocacy tied in as well.


Update: Here are the Parent Advisory flyers:

Parent Advisory Group

SP Parent Advisory (spanish)