Urbana’s new schools are priority as new board of education takes shape


Two new school board members and two incumbents will soon be sworn into office after winning seats on the Urbana School Board of Education.

Incumbents Darren Thomas, Tim Lacy and political newcomers Amy Paul and Sarah Finch will sit on the board that will be tasked with making decisions about how the district utilizes a new high school and elementary school - both that could be open within a year.

RELATED: Urbana school board candidates debate future of city schools

“I feel honored that enough people thought that I was the right person for the job,” Thomas said.

Thomas was appointed to the board after board member Warren Stevens was killed in a car accident. Thomas ran for a four-year seat in the election while Sarah Finch won Steven’s unexpired two-year term. She will have to run again in 2019 if she wants to stay on the school board.

MORE: Urbana buys $925K property for new elementary school

“I am excited and looking forward to moving the kids into a new school and watching them continue to grow and develop,” Thomas said.

Urbana voters approved $31.3 million bond issue in 2014 and the schools are currently being built. The new high school is near the current high school while the new elementary school is being built on U.S. Highway 68. The high school is expected to open over the 2018 spring break and the elementary school could be open as soon as next school year.

Paul was the leading vote-getter in the race that had nine people running for three spots. She garnered more than 15 percent of the vote. She is currently a principal at Simon Kenton Elementary School in Springfield and worked in the Urbana district for a number of years.

RELATED: Urbana school construction back on track after delays

“It’s very humbling and I appreciate the support from the community,” Paul said. “I am very excited about stepping into a position on the board. I hope to use my experience to benefit Urbana children.”

She’s not sure what caused her to be the leading vote-getter other than she relied on her experience in education to discuss important issues with voters throughout her campaign.

Only School Board President Jan Engle did not have his seat up for grabs this election.



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Community News

PETA to erect billboard near site where cows were killed on New Mexico interstate
PETA to erect billboard near site where cows were killed on New Mexico interstate

An animal rights organization said it would put a new billboard at the intersection of two New Mexico interstate highways where four cows were killed last week, KOAT reported Friday. >> Read more trending news  People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals officials said the sign will be placed near the flyover ramp from I-25 southbound...
Cancer-stricken toddler Brody Allen, who got an early Christmas, dies
Cancer-stricken toddler Brody Allen, who got an early Christmas, dies

A 2-year-old Ohio boy suffering from inoperable brain cancer, whose town and family gave him an early Christmas, died Friday morning, the Journal-News reported. >> Read more trending news  Brody Allen passed away around 6 a.m. Friday, his father, Todd Allen, posted on Facebook.  "This morning at 6 a.m. Brody passed quietly...
There are 107 days until Super Bowl LIII: Is Atlanta prepared?
There are 107 days until Super Bowl LIII: Is Atlanta prepared?

There are 107 days left before Mercedes-Benz Stadium hosts Super Bowl LIII, and massive preparations are ongoing in Atlanta. >> Read more trending news  Atlanta Super Bowl Host Committee Chairman of Operations Brett Daniels is one of an army of local leaders who have spent more than two years preparing for the big game, which will...
Monster clog found in sewer system from thousands of pounds of flushable wipes
Monster clog found in sewer system from thousands of pounds of flushable wipes

  Thousands of pounds of flushable wipes created a monster clog in the sewer system in Charleston, South Carolina. >> Read more trending news      It happened last Thursday at the city’s Plum Island Wastewater Treatment Plant, where officials said baby wipes clogged a series of large pumps. Workers had to use bypass...
Check your tickets! Mega Millions historic $1 billion jackpot numbers are in
Check your tickets! Mega Millions historic $1 billion jackpot numbers are in

The numbers for the historic $1 billion Mega Millions jackpot are in. Update 11:05 p.m. EDT Oct. 19: The winning numbers for Friday night’s staggering Mega Millions jackpot are:  65-53-23-15-70 and the Mega ball is 7. If no one matches all six numbers, the jackpot increases to $1.6 billion.  Update 12:45 p.m. EDT Oct. 19: The Powerball...
More Stories