Lebanon Elementary hosts official ribbon-cutting for new school

Lebanon district officials wanted to keep the ribbon cutting and open house of their new school building “low-key, but we wanted to open it to the public,” said Superintendent Patrick Keeney.

That’s just what they’ll do, starting at 1 p.m. Sunday with farewell tours of the old building still in use at 102 West Schuetz. They’ve located the time capsule placed there in 1938.

At 2 p.m., on the same campus, the crowd can stroll over to the new building for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. The old building will be demolished in June, and the students will move next school year.

In addition to the Lebanon High School band performing, the district has found some photos to put on a video loop for entertainment.

“Our district is 140 years old,” Keeney said, so there are plenty of photos.

Keeney said the committee of about 17, mostly teachers, has been hard at work planning the tours and ceremony.


Bratty kids and obnoxious royalty took the stage of Saints Peter and Paul Catholic School in Waterloo earlier this month. The junior high elective drama class tamed audiences with “Haphazardly Ever After,” described as a “fractured fairy tale farce.”

King Barnabas and Queen Mildred, played by Nathan Feldmeier and Colleen Lance, are trying for happily ever after but their children, Princesses Cinnamon (Emma Miskell) and Pepperment (Kelsey Bivens) and Princes Slacker (Logan Doerr) and Hairgel (Karson Huels), undermine all their attempts.

The cast and crew, led by teacher Beth Lyons, performed a matinee for the students and an evening show for their families.


High school students from around the metro-east will pitch their best new product or service ideas at 5 p.m. Wednesday at the Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville in hopes of winning one of five $500 awards.

The Allsup Elevator Pitch Competition is an annual event that allows the contestants a chance to pitch an idea to a panel of judges. It is open to the public. The contest is at SWIC’s Liberal Arts Complex Conference Room.


Fifth grader Rylee Gobble will attend the 2015 National Youth Leadership Forum: Pathways to STEM at Loyola University in Chicago this summer. Rylee was nominated by Debbie Lippert, a teacher at Signal Hill School. Rylee is a member of Girls On The Run and the Student Leadership Team.


Kara Luechtefeld and John Langen, both of Belleville West, were among the nine students who attended Youth Day in Springfield. While there, students meet their elected officials and learned how government works during the daylong event.


Bread became part of the history lesson at Lebanon’s Junior High School. A yeast roll was part of the dinner served to President Harry Truman and Prime Minister Winston Churchill on March 5, 1946, after the “Iron Curtain” speech. The only female radio announcer to cover the speech, Ruth Mae Markus, brought the rolls to that dinner in 1946. Seventh-grader Taylor Garcia and her grandmother used the recipe to make the dinner rolls for teacher Donna Wood’s world geography class.


Bricks 4 Kids in the metro-east is hosting a LEGO-building contest, and the deadline to register is extended to April 24. The contest will be 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 2 at St. Clair Square Mall. Four age categories will be judged on “the quality of the written description’s explanation of the built creation, construction, use of parts, creativity, and their overall completeness,” according to

First-, second- and third- place prizes will be awarded in each age category and include free or discounted bricks 4 Kidz Summer Camp, LEGO Brick Sets and LEGO Tech Sets. The event will also have a disc jockey and demonstrations by Kid Friendly Network.


Belleville East teacher Daniel Boyt is a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Scholar. Boyt will attend a two-week program in Brooklyn, N.Y. this summer called “Scholarship and Performance: A Combined Approach to Teaching Shakespeare’s Plays.” Only 25 teachers nationwide were picked for the program and will each receive a stipend of $2,100 for their study, travel and living expenses.


Cahokia High School’s JROTC Drill and Color Guard Team earned third place overall at the 2015 Gateway Invitational Drill and Color Guard Meet on April 11 in O’Fallon.

The team took first place in Exhibition Drill and third place in Color Guard. Cadet Scott Bovee won first and Cadet Noel Lane earned second place medals in the Individual Drill Down category.


The Belleville East concert and show choirs performed at the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida as part of the Disney Performing Arts Program. Director Kim Stamps led the group through songs including “Today Was a Fairy Tale” by Taylor Swift and a medley of songs from “Into the Woods.” The choirs also participated in workshops with an experienced Disney vocalist.


Waterloo, Mater Dei and Litchfield were among the high schools honored by IDOT’s Operation Teen Safe Driving Program. The schools won between $500 and $2,500 to host a post-prom event. The Illinois Department of Transportation, Ford Motor Company Fund, Allstate Foundation, Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White and Illinois State Police finalized judging in March.

The Operation Teen Safe Driving Program began in 2007 in Tazewell County and expanded to a statewide program in 2008. Since the onset of the program the teen fatalities have dropped by 54.2 percent. The program lets teens create their own safe driving campaigns and share them with their peers to promote safe driving habits among a traditionally high-risk age group.


Kristin Strubhart, a teacher at O’Fallon Township High School, is Citizenship Education Teacher of the Year. She earned the award “in recognition of excellently promoting citizenship, education and patriotic principles of the state of Illinois Veterans of Foreign Wars.” She was presented a plaque and a check for $100 from one of the VFW IL State officers.