News Local/State

Unit Four Committee Of Community Members Holds First Meeting On Facilities Question


The Champaign School Board’s Tier Two Facilities Committee will be meeting every Thursday until May, as it tries to come up with a facilities plan for the Unit Four district. The panel of community members met for the first time Monday night; its job is to review ideas from a Tier One committee of district faculty and staff, and advise the school board on whether they meet community needs … after two previous proposals failed at the polls.

The Tier Two committee’s inaugural meeting featured a Tier One committee report on the district’s facility needs for its two high schools, three middle schools and three of its elementary schools: South Side, Dr. Howard and the International Prep Academy.

Tier Two committee facilitator, and former Champaign City Manager, Steve Carter says committee members put off for another time any discussion of the controversial topic of where a new Champaign Central High School should be located.

“They didn’t really get into the site question," said Carter. "I think that will start coming up at the next meeting, where the architect construction manager will start talking about: Okay, you have these needs, and how do you start meeting the needs for these buildings. And that will start getting into some of the discussion of site requirements needed as well.”

That next meeting is set for Thursday, March 10. The Tier Two Facilities Committee is made up of local elected officials, including members of the Champaign City Council, Champaign Park Board and Savoy Village Board; leaders from the business sector, including representatives of the Champaign County Chamber of Commerce and Black Chamber of Commerce;  and other community members, including Don Moyer Boys and Girls Club director Sam Banks and University of Illinois Education Professor Luz Murillo.