Thursday, February 28, 2008

SD89 Honor Roll Students Saluted At PMSA!!!

According to the West Suburban Journal Newspaper, School District’s 89 and 209 collaborated for the first time ever to acknowledge first and second quarter honor roll students from ten schools throughout Maywood-Melrose Park-Broadview.

In December the District 89 School Board broke tradition and chose not to participate with the Village of Maywood officials to recognize students who attend District 89 schools in Maywood.

Despite the split, village officials held the honor roll ceremony in January.

Fifty-three students were expected to show, but only 46 were in attendance compared to past years 200 students participated.

District 89 School Board, President, Grady Rivers, said politics would no longer play a role in student oriented activities.

“In past years they have pulled parents aside to sign petitions during the honor roll event. That’s unacceptable,” said Rivers of village officials. “We’re taking politics out of the event and it’s just about honoring the students.”

The ceremony ran five days from Feb. 19 thru the 26 and recognized 670 students, of which 363 students attended as of Tuesday, Feb. 25. Those honored included fourth to eight grade students with As and Bs in all eight subjects.

“We had really good turnout by parents and kids,” said District 89 Interim Superintendent Thea Perkins about the event. “We had a lot of positive feedback from parents who appreciated their children being honored at the district level as apposed to the local level,” she said of the collaboration with District 209.

The event was held at the District 209 Proviso Math and Science Academy (PMSA). The
platform, according to Perkins, allowed students to see the possibilities of higher education if they continue in their studies.

Markethia Fair, 13, who attends Garfield Elementary School, is excited about making the honor roll, and even more excited about her acceptance into PMSA in the fall. “I can’t believe I got accepted,” she said.

“Given the choice of public schools, getting into PMSA was a major accomplishment and possibly the first step in achieving her goals,” said Stephanie Jacob about her daughter, Sasha Taylor, 14, who will also attend PMSA in the fall.

“I am so excited that this was a success” Perkins said of the event. “The emphasis is all about putting forth students’ best effort in preparation for high school and college” she said. “We have succeeded.

“We hope this event is the first in a long tradition with District 209,” Rivers said.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Melrose Park Appoints New Trustee...

According to the Proviso Herald, the Melrose Park Village Board approved on Monday the appointment of Jaime Anguiano to fill the remainder of the term left open since December by the departure of Thomas Klein. The term ends in November.

Anguiano is a District 89 School Board member and works as a Cook County juvenile probation officer, according to a village statement.

Trustee John Conteduca was the only trustee to vote against the appointment. Conteduca said he had only heard about Anguiano about a week before the Monday meeting through a letter the mayor had sent to the trustees recommending Anguiano's appointment. Aside from Anguiano's work resume, which was provided to the trustees, Conteduca said he knows nothing about the appointee.

"It's nothing personal," Conteduca said. "I'd like to know the person before I approve him."

Anguiano will be sworn in at the March 10 Village Board meeting.

Klein had been a trustee for seven years and left his position in order to move closer to family, according to the village statement.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Here We Go Again...Another Superintendent Might Be Headed Out In SD88!!!

The Pioneer Press' Catherine Gran recently reported on Bellwood SD88. Here's the story:

Bellwood School District 88's interim superintendent still is awaiting word on her future with the district.

Board members Feb. 11 again declined to approve a contract for the 2008-09 school year for Rosemary Hendricks.

Board President Tommy Miller compared the issue to a student seeking a final grade of "A" while halfway through the semester. He did not rule out a contract for Hendricks.

"One has to earn it," he said. "You get promoted by performance. If you do the work, the board will review that.

At the January meeting, board members began voting on a motion to approve a superintendent's contract, but when called to vote Maria Ramirez-Casterjon told fellow board members that while she agreed interim superintendent Rosemary Hendricks was a good superintendent, Casterjon wanted to hold off voting on a contract until the Feb. 4 board meeting. That meeting was rescheduled to Feb. 11.

With three votes already cast on the original motion, board President Tommy Miller, with the approval of the district's attorney Martha-Victoria Diaz of Sanchez, Daniels and Hoffmann LLP of Chicago, recognized Casterjon's motion to table the vote on the contract.

Voting in favor of tabling the contract approval were Casterjon, Miller, Yvette Ramirez and Marilyn Thurman.

Voting against were Athea Busby, Ronald Anderson and Daphne Walker.

That vote mirrored the February vote.

The board approved hiring Hendricks as interim superintendent June 21. She received a one-year contract at a salary of $140,000. Hendricks came to the district after serving one year as superintendent of Calumet School District 157.

What is going on in SD88?

PLCCA Celebrates 40 years in business!!!

The Proviso Leyden Council for Community Action (PLCCA), a local non for profit founded by Bishop Claude Porter, will be celebrating 40 years with a big bash at the Chicago Marriott on March 1, 2008. PLCCA serves the poor and underprivileged. Congratulations PLCCA.

Proviso East Alum Traded To Chicago Bulls!!!

Proviso East Alum, Shannon Brown, was traded recently from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Chicago Bulls. Brown was one of the players involved in the big trade sending Ben Wallace to the Cavaliers. Brown, a second year player drafted by the Cavaliers in the first round of the 2007 NBA draft, comes back to help his hometown team re-group and make a playoff run. Brown graduated from Proviso East in 2003 and Michigan State in 2007.

What do you think of Shannon Brown coming home?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Opposition Gearing Up In Stone Park, Hillside, Bellwood, Maywood, Melrose Park & Westchester!!!

The Insider has learned that opposition parties are currently forming in Stone Park, Hillside, Bellwood, Maywood, Melrose Park, and Westchester. Each party plans on running full slates against incumbents in April of 2009. Stone Park is reportedly in the midst of heavy financial problems. Hillside residents are fuming over the handling of the Hillside landfill. Bellwood residents are reportedly fed up with insider deals and cronyism. Maywood residents want to toss out the Yarbroughs and Ed Smith's west side influence. Former Stone Park Trustee Jesse Martinez is delusional and thinks he can oust Melrose Park Mayor Ronald Serpico. Cook County Commissioner Tony Peraica and Former SD209 Board member Mike Manzo plan on running a slate against Westchester Mayor Paul Gattuso. Proviso Township will be hot in 2009.

What do you think of the possiblities in April 2009?

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Republicans Attack Michelle Obama!!!

The McClatchey Newspapers recently reported a story on Michelle Obama that reads as follows:

WASHINGTON--Conservative bloggers and talkers were never going to like Barack Obama much anyway. But now their outrage has found a target in the candidate's wife.

Michelle Obama, 44, an Ivy League-educated lawyer (Princeton, Harvard Law), was campaigning for her husband Monday in Wisconsin when she said: ``For the first time in my adult lifetime, I am really proud of my country. And not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change. And I have been desperate to see our country moving in that direction.''

Predictably, her impolitic comment immediately hit critical mass on conservative cable TV, talk radio and the Internet. Democrats may not consider it a gaffe; Hillary Clinton's campaign made no comment. But the right's reaction is a measure of how differently politics may be played out when Democrats and Republicans face off later this year.

''I can't keep track of the number of times I've been proud -- really proud -- of my country since I was born and privileged to live in it,'' conservative commentator Michelle Malkin huffed in her column.

Rich Galen, who's also a conservative columnist, damned Obama by extensively quoting the conservatives' favorite chestnut, Lee Greenwood's Proud to Be an American. He noted that America is a place that ``gives people like Michelle Obama the right to say excruciatingly stupid things.''

And Rush Limbaugh? Let's just say that he got a lot of mileage out of it. ''Her unhinged comments ring true for many liberals,'' his Web site's front page says, two days after the remark.

The goal, of course, is to paint the Obamas as wacko liberals out of step with average Americans who, presumably, have a great deal of pride in their country.

Obama tried to revise and extend her remarks Wednesday.

''What I was clearly talking about was that I'm proud in how Americans are engaging in the political process,'' she said in remarks to WJAR-TV in Providence, R.I. ``For the first time in my lifetime, I'm seeing people rolling up their sleeves in a way that I haven't seen and really trying to figure this out, and that's the source of the pride that I was talking about.''

Bill Burton, an Obama campaign spokesman, said the right's reaction wasn't a problem for the campaign.

''It's a ridiculous notion,'' he said. ``Just because they're doing it doesn't mean there's any sense to it.''

Whether that's true depends largely on what you already think; the kerfuffle is a sort of Rorschach test for what people see in Barack Obama, said James Klumpp, a professor of political communication at the University of Maryland.

''For the Obama people, the explosion of comments . . . serves as a confirmation of the critique he is delivering, that this is just the old style of politics that needs to be changed,'' Klumpp said. ``For those who oppose Obama, it is another kind of confirmation.''

And for those voters in the middle, the undecideds and independents who swing elections? Such controversies tend to have short shelf lives, and whether this has any effect on those voters depends largely on what happens next. If the Obamas avoid similar controversies, this probably will be forgotten, Klumpp said. But if a pattern emerges, it could become a problem.

''Something else will come along,'' Klumpp said. ``It may exaggerate the effect of this or diminish the effect of this.''

For what it's worth, Cindy McCain, the wife of presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain, told a cheering crowd Tuesday that ``I am proud of my country. I don't know if you heard those words earlier. I am very proud of my country.''

What do you think of this whole flap?

Hillside Ready For Target Store!!!

The Village of Hillside is clearing land on Mannheim Road and Harrison Street paving the way for a major new development. Sources tell the Insider that the Village and Target Corporation have reached agreement for a store at the location which is set to open by the Spring of 2009. Just in time for the April 2009 election. Also pegged for the site is a Staples store and a new Holiday Inn Express. Kudos to Hillside!!!

Broadview Man Wins One Million Dollars In Illinois Lottery!!!

A construction worker who regularly plays the Illinois Lottery may have a few less worries after hitting it big with a $1 million prize on a ticket he purchased in Forest Park.

The Illinois Lottery has announced that Broadview resident Jackie White, 46, picked up a $10 scratch ticket at the Forest Park CTA station on Desplaines Avenue in January and walked out the door a much wealthier man. White was playing the $250 million Millionaire's Club game, which has a total of 30 $1 million prizes, according to a lottery spokesperson. It was unclear how many of the big purses have been collected since the game's launch in the summer of 2006.

"I just couldn't believe it," White said in a statement released by the lottery. "I almost had a heart attack. I know how to play this game, but when I saw that I had won the million dollars, I just didn't think it was for real."

White said he and his wife plan to invest the winnings and that he will continue working.

Melrose Park Ready For Graffiti!!!

Melrose Park is offering up to $1,000 for information on graffiti.

The ordinance, passed at the Feb. 11 Village Board meeting, states Melrose Park Police Chief Sam Pitassi will determine the reward amount. Reward claims must be filed within 90 days of a conviction, according to the ordinance.

"Our graffiti problem is not widespread, but this (ordinance) is a way to keep it down," Pitassi said.

The Village Board also established fines for offenders. Fines range from $50 to $750 for each offense and from $500 to $1,000 if the offense was gang-related.

Anyone with information about graffiti should call the Melrose Park police at (708) 344-8409.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Gene Moore Wins Big!!! Yarbrough In His Sights!!!

The Insider has learned that Cook County Recorder of Deeds Eugene "Gene" Moore won re-election last Tuesday by winning solidly in 28 townships across Cook County, including Proviso Township. According to sources, more won 60% of the vote in Proviso Township only losing 10 out of 100 plus precincts in Proviso. Has Moore been re-born in Proviso? Talk in the Moore camp is that he is eyeing his old Committeeman post again. Should Moore take out Karen Yarbrough once and for all?

Charles Flowers Being Sued As Regional Superintendent???

The Insider is hearing numerous reports that the new Regional Superintendent of Schools is being sued by former employees for discrimination. Does anyone have information on this? If so, feel free to post your comments here.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Barack Obama Looking Presidential!!!

Barack Obama is projected to win at least 11 states on Super Tuesday. Barack Obama is one step closer to winning the Democratic nomination for President. Go Barack!!!

Anita Alvarez Wins Democratic Nomination for State's Attorney!!!

The Insider projects that career prosecutor Anita Alvarez will win the Democratic nomination for Cook County State's Attorney. She makes history as the first woman and first Hispanic to caption the nomination. She should crush Republican candidate Tony Peraica in the November general election. Congratulations Anita Alvarez!!!

Gene Moore Wins Re-Election! Crushes Ed Smith! Sends Message to Yarbrough!

The Insider is predicting that Cook County Recorder of Deeds Eugene "Gene" Moore has won re-election easily over west side Alderman Ed H. Smith. The win is a big one for Moore who crushes Smith and his Proviso Township nemesis Karen A. Yarbrough. This is the second straight election setback for Yarbrough who lost 13 out of 14 seats in local races in April 2007. Congratulations Gene Moore!!!