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Open House March 10, 2012 2:00pm - 3:00pm 618 E Progress Street Ashland, Illinois

$109,900 Dawn Stremsterfer Realtor®, Broker Associate Office: 217-787-7215 Direct: 217-741-1865

"WELL MAINTAINED ranch with 3 bedrooms, 3.5 car heated attached garage, & over 1700 sq.ft. Large fenced back yard with 10.5 x 11 outbuilding w concrete floor. Many updates including Furnace 05, A/C unit 05, hot water heater 01, roof & gutters 05, windows 08, siding, bathroom 05, & 3rd car garage added in 05. Sliding glass door with deck and patio area. Pull down attic stairs in garage to access attic for storage. This home is a MUST SEE!"

PROFESSIONALS 2475 West Monroe Springfield, IL 62704 (cell) 217-741-1865

March 2012 Volume 6 Issue 3

615 S. Yates, 3 bds 2/5 bath. lots of space, all appliances stay, 2 c. att. gar. plus 30x50 shed partially heated & cooled, oversized doors for camper or boat.

615 S. Yates, Ashland -



Ann Martin Real Estate Broker 100% Club Member

2475 West Monroe Springfield, IL 62704 (cell) 217-652-6193

Office: 217-787-7215 Direct: 217-652-6193 Fax: 217-787-8957

312 N. Yates Ashland $59,900 OPEN HOUSE March 10, 2012 1:00pm - 2:00pm Nice updated home situated on 2 lots with an affordable price tag! Majority of the home was remodeled in 2009 including all new thermopane windows, bathroom, wiring, plumbing, drywall, insulation, carpet, light fixtures, etc. The large basement offers plenty of space for storage.

312 W. Franklin, Ashland

PROFESSIONALS (217)787-7215 Melissa Vorreyer Sales Team 217-652-0875

Move in ready 6 year new, 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with 2.5 car garage. Fresh paint thru-out. 1.5 blocks from park. AC Central schools.




“Where two or three come together in My name, I am there with them.”

BEREA CHRISTIAN CHURCH Minister Edward J.Moretto Sunday Christian Education Hour - 9:30 pm Sunday Worship - 10:30 am Wednesday Eve. Prayer Mtg. - 7:00 pm We’re Open On Sunday!! CHURCH OF CHRIST Minister Howard Chartier Sunday School - 9:00 am Sunday Worship - 10:00 am FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH Pastor Rev. David L. McHenry 476.3678 Sunday School - 9:30 am Sunday Worship - 10:30 am ST. AUGUSTINE CHURCH Father Chris Brey 476.8856 Ashland Sunday Mass - 9:00 am Beardstown Sunday Mass - 11:00 am Sunday (Spanish) - 12:30 pm Virginia Saturday - 5:00 pm UNITED METHODIST CHURCH Rev. Pam Hoffman 476.8858 Sunday Worship - 8:45 am Sunday School - 10:00 am Wednesday- Choir Practice - 7:00 Youth Second Saturday - 10am - 2pm NEW BEGINNINGS CHURCH, s.b.c. Pastor Terry Beauchamp Sunday School for all ages@ 9:10-10:00 am 2nd Service - 10:15 am YOUTH4TRUTH @ 6:30-7:30 pm Tuesday Corporate Prayer @ 7:00 pm Saturday’s Men’s Prayer Breakfast @ 8:00 am

2012 Lenten Services Schedule 3/04 3/11 3/18 3/25 4/01 4/06 4/08

Pleasant Plains Church of Christ Pam Hoffman Ashland Church of Christ John Sheppard Peter Cartwright United Methodist Robert Anderson Ashland First Baptist Church Howard Chartier New Beginnings Christian Fellowship David McHenry Richland Creek Baptist Church Terry Beauchamp Good Friday 7:00 p.m.* Berea Christian Church Keith Masten Sunrise Service 6:30 a.m.*

* All other services are on Sunday evenings at 5:00 p.m. There will be no food served after the Good Friday service.

Matthew 18:20

2012 March 3 April 7 May 5

Richland Creek Baptist Church St. Augustine Catholic Church Ashland Church of Christ

** Prayer Breakfast meets on the first Saturday morning of the month from September - May @ 9:00 am with the host church providing breakfast and devotions. If your group has a conflict in schedule, please arrange to trade dates with another group and notify the rest. Contact: Call contact person from each church to change schedule or start prayer circles in case of emergency or during the summer months as needed. Dorothy Taylor (AUMC) 476-3581 Marcia Masten (Richland Creek) 691-5469 Glenda Schleyhan (First Baptist) 476-8829 Becky King (New Beginnings) 891-3454 Betty Higgason (Church of Christ) 476-3824 Elaine Roth (St. Augustine Catholic) 476-3984

WORLD DAY OF PRAYER 2012 Women, men and children in more than 170 countries and regions will celebrate World Day of Prayer, Friday, March 2, 2012. The women of Malaysia have chosen the theme “Let Justice Prevail”. They open the service for 2012 with the greeting “selamat datang” - “peace and welcome” a reminder that harmony as a people is rooted in peace and welcome. The women name fair and just governance as the basis for peace. The stories chosen by the women of Malaysia give credence to the suffering that empowers their prayer. A clear message emerges: It takes courage, compassion and active engagement for justice to prevail. On March 2, 2012, let us resolve to work with God and with each other to create a world in which each gender, race, culture, religion and state is honored, nurtured and empowered. This year’s service will be held March 2 at 1pm at the Baptist Church, Ashland.

401 East 4th - Pleasant Plains New Price - $95,900

Spacious 3 BR, 1.5 BA ranch w/ attached 2.5 car attached garage & 2 car detached garage 2212 sq ft of fininished space. Great floor plan incl living rm & dining rm combo. Family rm w/ pass thur to Kit. Eat in kit w/ panty. Master BR w/ 2 closets. Enclosed porch w/ lots of potenital. Handicap potential. Recent updates incl. Furnace in 2008, Toof w/ tear off in 2010, carpet in BRs in 2010, SS refrig in 2010. Qualifies for Rural Housing loans. Call Bonnie Cartwright 741.4601.

Bonnie J. Cartwright Broker, ABR, ePro Cell: 217.741.4601 Office: 217.789.7200

The Graham Team Real Estate Associates LLC 2030 Timberbrooke Springfield, IL 62702

OPEN HOUSE MARCH 10 313 N. YATES 1:00 - 2:30 PM


PROFESSIONALS 1046 West Morton Jacksonville, IL 62650

Our sincere thanks to those who made our Trivia Night a success. The winning team, led by Billy Reynolds of Virginia, donated their prize money back to us. We took in over $550 to be used for Summer Days. Thanks, too, for all the delicious desserts brought in by various folks and the wonderful pulled pork Brian Creed prepared Plans are underway for another fun week-end at Ashland Summer Days, June 22-24 at James Park. — Ashland Community Club

MATT GREER President

Located at West Central Bank 400 East Buchanan, PO Box 467 Main: 217-476-3653 - Fax: 217-476-3342 Email:


Propane LLC 220 N. Yates - Ashland Office: 1-866-225-8126 Garrett Savage - Bob Savage Ron Ahlers - Salesman cell: (217)691-9631


Foundation Created for A-C Central School District #262 On September 15, 201I seven directors were seated on the board of the A-C Central Schools Foundation. The Foundation is classified a SA 501(3Xc) which is a tax-exempt organization under the Internal Revenue Code. Tax exempt status has been granted both for the foundation and its donors. The purpose of the Foundation is to provide financial or other resources in support of the curricular and co-curricular activities of A-C Central Community Unit District #262 and to aid and assist in general the cause of education, extra-curricular and interscholastic programs in the school district. Appointed as officers for the Foundation were Scot Atwood/President, Homer Rieker/VicePresident, Mathew Greer/Treasurer and J.R. Blair as Secretary.

The other board directors seated were V. Todd Jokisch, Milton Edge and Harold Hoagland Jr. An ex-officio member of the 217.741.3874 board is the current superintendent Rebecca Canty. President Scot Atwood stated, that schools across the nation are faced with increasing demands and diminishing resources and we have seen an explosion in foundations created to assist their local schools. This project has been in the planning stages for the last year and we as a board would like to thank West Central bank of Ashland for Donating $2500.00 to the Foundation. It is because of their generous donation that we were able to get Ashland, IL 62612 this project off the ground. We are committed to seeing a vibrant and financially secure education environment in the A-C Central School district. We are in the process of contacting Hours: alumni, community members, businesses, corporations and 7:30 am - 1 pm Closed anyone who has an interest in helping the school in Ashland Tuesday - Friday Saturday-Sunday-Monday and Chandlerville.



SPRINGFIELD, ILL. – Ashland native Timothy Parsons-Heather graduated Feb. 6 from the prestigious Certified Public Manager Program of Illinois located at the Center for State Policy and Leadership, Institute for Legal, Legislative and Policy Studies at the University of Illinois. Mr. Parsons-Heather completed the 28-course program in the areas of leadership ethics, cultural competency, effective supervision, project management, human resources, non-profit partnerships, and public policy analysis. Timothy completed the two-year program in 14 months and has become a distinguished Fellow with the American Academy of Certified Public Managers. In addition to his 1976 Bachelor’s degree from MacMurray College and two Master’s degrees in Public Administration and Communication from the University of Illinois, Timothy is a member with the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials, the American Society for Public Administration, and the National Communication Association. He served as executive director of the Housing Authority of Cass County, Illinois from 1977 until 1991. He is the son of the late Thomas and Alta Parsons Heather of Ashland.

JENNA THOMPSON NAMED STUDENT OF THE MONTH AT A-C CENTRAL Congratulations to Jenna Thompson for being selected Student of the Month for January at A-C Central High School. Miss Thompson is the daughter of Steve and Amy Thompson of Chandlerville. Jenna is a leader both in and out of the classroom as evidenced by her involvement in various school activities. She is a member of the S.T.A.R. (Activity Chairman), Natural Helpers and Spanish Club. Elizabeth is also a member of the Volleyball and Softball team. Away from school Jenna is a member of the Chandlerville Christian Church and enjoys spending time with her family and babysitting. Her volunteer work this year involved helping to organize and conduct a Trivia Night which raised over $1000 for the American Cancer Society. Miss Thompson plans on attending Illinois College in Jacksonville, IL. She plans on entering the Pre-Nursing Program. She will major in Biology. Upon graduation from IC she plans on attending Rush University in Chicago and earning a Master of Science in Nursing degree.

Congratulations to Jenna Thompson on this significant honor!

Distributor of Fine Quality Vacuums


Carpet Cleaning Car Interior

Cell (217) 741-3758 Phone: (217) 476-3508

608 W. Franklin Ashland, IL 62612


108 W. Editor Street Ashland, IL 62612 217.476.3354 Jeffrey A. Donnan - Kay Handy Ora Lee Campbell

Other Locations: 117 S. Front Street Virginia, IL 62691 217.452.7717 Kristen Arthalony 815 W. Clinton Rushville, IL 62681 217.322.6230 Kala Peacock

116 State Street Beardstown, IL 62618 217.323.3018 Debbie Jones 979 Clocktower Drive Springfield, IL 62704 217-726-9885 Stacey M. Hester

Prentice Farmers Elevator 2303 Elevator Avenue Ashland, IL 62612 217.476.3516 or 1.800.255.8659 James R. Blakeman, Manager 4 locations to serve you: Prentice, Philadelphia, Strawns Crossing, and Tallula.

Dealers in Grain, Seed and Kent Feeds.

PACK THE HOUSE NIGHT AT THE “CROCKPOT CAFÉ” FRIDAY MARCH 2, 2012 Please bring a non-perishable food item to be donated to the Cass County Food Pantry. Your donation will not only assist a worthy cause, it will also benefit you. With your purchase of an entrée you will receive a free drink or you will receive a free 2 liter of soda with every pizza purchased. In addition to our HOME COOKED MENU items, we also offer HOMEMADE DAILY SPECIALS, HOMEMADE DESERTS and our newest item, HOMEMADE PIZZAS. Please come help us make a difference in our community. Thank you for your generosity! CROCKPOT CAFÉ

Ashland High School Alumni Association “All About Ashland” The annual Alumni Banquet will be held on Saturday, May 26, 2012. A social hour will be held from 5:00-6:00 pm. The banquet will begin at 6:00 pm. The cost is $15 per person. This year, we are trying something new. There will be several items on display for you to bid on in a silent auction. We have such items as a Bunn coffee maker, Cardinal baseball tickets, assorted gift baskets and more. Please come prepared to bid. All funds raise will benefit the Alumni Association. Classes being honored this year are 1937, 1942, 1947, 1952, 1957, 1962, 1967, 1972, 1977, 1982 and 1987. Plan to join friends, classmates and teachers as we share memories of our days at AHS and catch up on your life now. “Like” us on Facebook at Ashland High School Alumni Association. Watch The Scoop for more news!


New Construction Remodeling Gutters

Monday - Saturday 7:00 am to 8:00 pm

Mr. Dan Williams has been selected by the Two Rivers Illinois Principal Association as Principal of the Year. He as served as Principal at A-C Central Middle and High School for 21 years. During his tenure as principal, he has presented at the IPA Conference, Regional and State Conferences and was one of the leaders in implementing the Block Schedule. Under his leadership A-C Central has implemented a transition program for social skills and test prep, a community service component for high school graduation, and recently launched a 1-1 Student laptop initiative. Additionally, A-C was recognized as one of the top 100 high schools based upon their academic achievement on state testing. Mr. Williams has been recognized as a past winner of the Partners in Education Award by Horace Mann and in 2010 he received Agriculture Education Advocacy Award 2010 by the FFA.

Junctions 123 & 125 - Ashland, Illinois 62612

Sundays and Holidays 8:00 am to 6:00 pm

Lucky’s CafÊ 476-GOOD Great Pizza! Great Salad Bar! Great Burgers! Serving Breakfast Saturday & Sunday - 7am - 10:30am


June 11th - 15th Mackinac Island $730.00 per person (Double Occupancy) July 19th Mystery Trip $94.00 per person 400 E. Buchanan St. P.O. Box 467 Ashland, IL 62612-0467 PH. 217.476.3325 FX. 217.476.3342

A Full Service Bank

ANDERSON AUTOMOTIVE, INC. 110 South Yates Street Ashland, Illinois 62612 217-476-3450 OR 476-3451

Celebrating 30 years 1982 - 2012 MARCH SPECIALS

Indianapolis, IN—The National FFA Organization (FFA) announced that Parrish Smith of Ashland, IL was selected to receive a Career Pathways grant in the amount of $1,000 to initiate or improve Smith’s career development experience known as a Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE). To be eligible, the student must be in grates 7-11, have an SAE and be a member of FFA. Smith is a member of the A-C Central FFA chapter and was selected from hundreds of applicants nationwide. Smith’s grant for a Plant Systems SAE is a special project of the National FFA Foundation. The National FFA Organization, formerly knows as Future Farmers of America, is a national youth organization of 540,739 student members—all preparing for leadership and careers in the sciences, business and technology of agriculture—as part of 7,489 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The National FFA Organization changed to its present name in 1988, in recognition of the growth and diversity of agriculture and agricultural education. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. For more information visit, and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and FFA Nation

All month free tire rotation with oil change Balance extra, (trucks excluded) March 5th - 9th Free Oil Change with Letter M & Number 2 in Your License Plate.

RPA Farmers Co-op

March 12th - 16th 2 for 1 on Wiper Blades March 19th - 23rd Military Discount, 10% Off March 26th - 30th $20 Off Any Tune Up


3090 Richland Elev. Rd. Pleasant Plains, IL 62677


Pleasant Plains


300 N. Washington Pleasant Plains, IL 62677

220 North Niagara Ashland, IL 62612



There is currently a vacancy on the Board of Trustees. If you would like to be considered for this post, a letter of interest including relevant experience should be submitted by March 12, 2012, 4:00pm to the Village office. Please be aware that there is a phone scam targeting grandparents. A male places the call and identifies himself as “your grandson� and asks for money to be sent to him. If you receive such a call, verify that the caller is in fact your grandchild before sending any money or giving out any personal information. If you believe you have received one of these scam calls, contact the Ashland Police Department at 217/476-3317. If you see a street light out, call the Village office (217/476-3317) and we will contact Ameren CIPS for repair.

Water $27.50 $14.75 $ 1.05 $39.00

First 1,000 gallons Per 1,000 gallons after first 1,000 EPA Testing Fee Minimum monthly charge

Sewer $10.45 $ 4.40

E-mail: Facebook: Village of Ashland

Village of Ashland Board Members & Staff: Dave Handy, Mayor Jim Birdsell, Chief of Police Ron Cave, Public Works Director Alicia Hager, Village Treasurer Kitty Mau, Acting Village Clerk Vanessa Doellman, Deputy Clerk

Fadra Birdsell, Trustee Stan Fulton, Trustee Seth Thornley, Trustee Frank Wallce, Trustee Terry Blakeman, Trustee

BITS-N-PIECES MARCH BIRTHDAYS 1 - Dorothy Taylor 4 - Michelle Ann Davin Jolly 6 - Heather Watkins 9 - Tom Heather Jr. 10 - Diane Heather Boehme 17 - Jim Briggs 17 - Kathie Blair

18 - Sara (Dodds) Maybus 20 - Stan Fulton 20 - Sue Pschirrer 20 - Bock Mayes 21 - Jennifer Allen 23 - Jackson Allen 28 - Barb Blakeman 29 - Amber Millburg

MARCH ANNIVERSARIES 1 - Bob & Jean Briggs 6 - Edgar Jr. & Joyce Robinson 9 - Steve & Phyllis Aggert 22 - Gailen & Monica Thronley 29 - Scott & Mickey Anderson

ASHLAND VOLUNTEER FIRE DEPARTMENT EASTER EGG HUNT Saturday, April 7th 10:00 am at James Park Age Groups: 0-3, 4-7, & 8-10 Please send requests to: Ashland Scoop c/o Printers Ink PO Box 193 Ashland, IL 62612 217-476-3764

The Ashland Scoop Committee would like to offer the newsletters by subscription. This would be great for out-of-town people who can’t make it in to pick one up. It also would be make a great gift for those relatives who have moved away and want to keep up with local news. Cost is $24.00 per year. Newsletters will be mailed out the first week of each month.

SR. SAINTS… Sr. Saints will be having a corn beef & cabbage dinner at the Baptist Church Hall, March 17th at 5:30. Bring a desert if you want. Call Linda Spradlin for reservations. ASHLAND VFW POST 3546… Meets monthly at 7:00 p.m. on the 3rd Monday at the Firehouse. AMERICAN LEGION POST 498... Meets monthly at 7:30 p.m. on the 3rd Monday at the Firehouse. ASHLAND U-HELP... Any student may apply for up to $500 loan with an interest rate of 3%. Applications are available at West Central Bank in Ashland. ASHLAND WOMAN’S CLUB... Woman’s Club will meet March 6th at 1:30 pm at the First Baptist Church Hall. All ladies are invited. The program will be “Creating cards with Angela” by Angela Larakers. CITY WIDE GARAGE SALES….. The spring city wide garage sales will be Saturday April 21st. Call John Jones at 476-3914. CONGRATULATIONS… to Quincy Notre Dame winning the State Title in Class 2A Girls Basketball on Sat. QND is coached by Eric Orne formerly of Ashland.

Amity Nail Spa 116 N. Yates Ashland, IL Phone: 217-416-7615 Lana J. Pfaffe, Nail Technician

Have any nail service in March and get your name in the pot of gold for a free manicure and free pedicure in April.

ASHLAND COMMUNITY DAYS JUNE 22, 23, & 24 Friday Nite Entertainment Leaving Ashland - 8pm, James Park Saturday Morning Parade 9:30am - Theme: Honoring All Veterans Saturday Night Entertainment 6:30 pm - Devon Clemons 8:00 pm - Confederate Railroad

Enjoy delicious, refreshing soups and salads on the third Thursday of the month at the Ashland First Baptist Church Fellowship Hall (221 W. Washington St., Ashland IL) A delicious soup and salad bar will be offered to individuals 60 years of age or older from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Reservations are highly encouraged but not necessary (217) 479-4619. A suggested donation of $4.00 is asked to cover the cost of the meal. No person will be denied a meal due to a monetary contribution less than the suggested donation. More of a donation is also welcome! Sponsored by: Prairie Council on Aging’s Bread of Love Program (217) 479-4619 Wallbaum Development Inc. Plumbing - Heating - Air Conditioning Backhoe - Trenching 115 W. Freemont St. PO Box 136 Ashland, IL 62612

We Do It All In Just 1 Call! Jim - Todd - Travis

Phone: (217)476-3595

Co. Gardner Construction 2878 Panther G rove Road Ashland, IL 6261 2

Cell: 217-341-3415 Leave Message 217-476-8135

Remodel Kitchen & Baths Replace Roof & Room Additions

Smith Chiropractic Clinic Dr. Kathie G. Smith 111 North Hardin Ashland, IL 62612 (217)476-3547 Office Hours by Appointment Monday and Thursday 10 a.m. - 7 p.m. Wednesday 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

BOY SCOUT AND CUB SCOUT EVENTS It is that time of year again for the annual Boy Scout and Cub Scout “Scouting for Food” event. On March 18th the Boy Scouts will be putting flyers and/or bags on the doors of Ashland Residents. On Saturday March 24th from 9:30am-noon, they will be collecting the food left on the porches and bring it to the Methodist Church for the Cub Scouts to weigh it and sort it for the local food pantry.

Springfield AWC Offers Communications Scholarship SPRINGFIELD, IL February 24 — The Association for Women in Communications, Springfield Chapter, announces the opening of its 2012 scholarship award search. The scholarship competition awards $1,000 to a junior, senior or graduate level college student from central Illinois or a student who is attending a college or university in central Illinois. Applicants must be majoring in communications, journalism, public relations or related fields and have an above-average GPA. Application deadline is Friday, March 30, 2012.

On the evening of March the 24th the Cub Scouts will be having the annual pinewood derby race and a cake auction. This event will be starting at 5:00PM. Come out and support the Cub Scouts and bid on a cake or purchase your supper or a snack at the concession stand. After the Cub Scout race there will be an open race for anyone who would like to race, rules will be the same. The cost for the open race is $10.00 per car/racer and cars will need to be weighed in by 5pm. The Boy Scouts have been busy the last few months: January– they participated in the Klondike Derby; February– they participated in the First Aide Meet; and the first weekend in March they will be going to a Merit Badge Day. In February the Cub Scouts had their lock-in at the YMCA in Jacksonville and hopefully are rested up so in March will be ready for the Pinewood Derby. The top 5 will be going to District Pinewood Derby at Routt High School on March 31st. Wish them luck.

The applicant must demonstrate a commitment to pursuing a professional career in communications through educational work and communications activities. Two essays, reference letters and current college transcripts also are required. Finalists may be interviewed by telephone or asked to appear for a brief interview before a selection committee in Springfield. Additional information about the scholarship and an application is on the Springfield AWC Web site at Completed applications and supporting information can be emailed to or mailed to Melinda McDonald, Scholarship Chair, Association for Women in Communications, Springfield Area Chapter, P.O. Box 5192, Springfield, IL 62705-5192. A committee of professional communicators and educators will choose the recipient, who will be announced at the AWC May meeting. The Association for Women in Communications, Springfield Chapter, instituted this annual academic scholarship program to recognize outstanding communications students. The award symbolizes the commitment of the local chapter to education and continuing high professional standards for the communications industry.

Michelle Romine 217-473-7481

Proceeds to benefit the American Cancer Society, via the Tri-County Relay For Life Event, on behalf of team CGMS

AS Sweet As Candy in Candy Land By: Lakyn Rives Saturday evening the 11 of February, the STAR organization sponsored the annual Sweetheart Dance in the A-C Central High School cafeteria. This dance was a great way to spend a Saturday night being alcohol and drug free while still being with friends and having a fun time. The coronation for the dance was held at 7:00 P.M. crowning King, Will Edge, Queen, Maggie Allen and Prince, Joseph Ratliff and Princess, Carmen Savage. The students enjoyed the dance with cupcakes, cookies, candy, great music, and fabulous dĂŠcor that was provided by the STAR members. th

Pictured from Left to Right: Queen- Maggie Allen, King- Will Edge, Princess-Carmen Savage, and Prince- Joseph Ratliff.

Court back row left to right: Lauren Pfaffe, Lane Wegs, Joseph Ratliff, April Leinberger, Zach Fields, Jenna Thompson, Bradley Birdsell, Will Edge, Lakyn Rives, Sicely Nicholas, Carmen Savage, Front: Marlee Landon, Maggie Allen, and Kaitie Devlin.

National FFA Week Celebrations! National FFA Week is celebrated annually by FFA Chapters across the United States in honor of our members of the past and present to celebrate our accomplishments and grow for the future. A-C Central members joined in the celebration through field trips, competitions, and a little fun to end the week! On Tuesday, February 21st, thirty members of the A-C Central FFA Chapter traveled to Peoria to the Caterpillar track-type tractor production facility. While there members learned about safety practices, the history of the company, career opportunities and saw the production of D7-D11 tractors being built in the factory. While in Peoria we also visited the new Bass Pro Shops. Thursday brought out our competitive side as Jordan Keyes, Nathan Mahoney, Stacey Eskew, and Carmen Savage interviewed for the Illinois FFA State Degree in Athens. We are proud to announce that all four members were recommended for the degree based on their FFA activities, ability to keep records and their scholastic record while in high school. Nathan was also named the Star in Agriculture Placement for Section 14 and will advance to district competition in March. The week concluded with a trip to the Nelson Center in Springfield where members took to the ice and skated for the evening. Upcoming activities include attending the Women Changing the Face of Agriculture Conference March 9th, American FFA Degree Interviews for former members Brandon Smith, Teagan Smith and Haley Pfaffe, Agriculture Legislative Day, and District III Proficiency Interviews for our members who won the Section 14 competition earlier this month. These members include Carmen Savage in the area of Vet Science, Krissy Simmons in the area of Food Science, Stacey Eskew in the area of Turfgrass, Caseelynn Johnston in the area of Agriculture ResearchAnimal Systems, Lane Wegs in the area of Beef Production Entrepreneurship, and Parrish Smith in Vegetable Production. We will also be hosting a "drive-thru" Spring Farmer Lunch at the high school shop on April 13th. Meals can be picked up from 11:00-1:00. We will be serving a pulled-pork sandwich, chips, cookies and a drink for a $5.00 donation to the chapter. Advance tickets are available for $2.50 by contacting Jennifer Waters at the high school at 217-476-3312 or e-mail Thank you to our sponsors Cargill for the meat donation and Munson Hybrids for donating water. We would also like to thank the local businesses who have purchased advanced tickets for this event: Brandt Consolidated, RPA Farmers Elevator, West Central Bank, Prentice Elevator, Dudley Farms, Inc., Beard Implement Company, and Cosner Family Enterprises. Thank you for your continued support of agriculture at A-C Central High School and the A-C Central FFA Chapter. For the past 15 years Alan Shawn Feinstein has been spearheading a campaign to help alleviate hunger in our nation. Each year Mr. Feinstein donates $1 million to be divided among agencies who work to fight hunger. The Cass County Food Pantry will again be participating in this program, which has come to be known as “The Feinstein Challenge.� All donations and pledges made between March 1 and April 30, 2012 will be recorded and sent in to the Feinstein Foundation. They will then send us a share of the $1 million that is proportionate to the amount of money we raised in comparison with the other participants in the challenge. Your donation to the food pantry during the months of March and April helps us bring in even more funds we can use to feed the hungry of Cass County. Over the past 15 years the Feinstein Challenges have helped agencies raise over $1.25 billion to help ensure no one goes hungry. Your participation with us in the Feinstein Challenge makes you a partner in the most successful ongoing effort ever to fight hunger. To make a donation or a pledge, contact Joanne Anderson by phone at 473-5638 or by mail at Cass County Food Pantry, 138 S Main, Virginia, IL 62691. There are also donation cans in many businesses throughout the county, and the money collected from these cans also counts toward the challenge. We thank you for your generous support in the past and for your thoughtful consideration of the needs of our neighbors.

SCHOOL CONSOLIDATION At the joint board meeting between A-C Central and PORTA, the A-C Central Education Association presented a statement regarding possible consolidation between the two districts based on a survey completed by the educators. The results of the survey are as follows: Out of 39 members, 27 responded. Of the 27 respondents, 24 were in favor while 3 were not. Improved course offerings in the high school for all students was considered to be the biggest benefit from consolidation. The educators are very concerned about the number of students taking 2 PE classes or working as teacher assistants because there are no other choices. It was reported that currently 27 students are TA's with some teachers having 2 at the same time and 8 students who have 2 blocks of PE in a semester. With consolidation, academics would be enhanced by bringing more students together with similar needs hence making it economically feasible to offer more classes or bring back classes that were cut years ago like home economics and accounting. As for drawbacks, only 8 educators listed concerns. These concerns would hold true for consolidation in general not specifically with PORTA. They included increased transportation of students on the outer edges of the district, loss of our high school in Ashland, loss of our identity as a district, our communities becoming ghost towns, and educators losing their jobs or commuting farther to work. If consolidation were to pass, 62% of the educators would like the transition to take two years so that a well developed plan would be formed. In the last consolidation efforts between Ashland and Chandlerville, 2 years of time was taken to form the new district. The educators listed many benefits that A-C Central would bring to a consolidated district with PORTA. First of all, we are a solid staff of educators willing to do what it takes to make improvements to our curriculum. We are currently very active in aligning our teaching to fit the new Common Core Standards. We have developed some very successful programs for state test preparation and academic intervention in both the middle and high school. We have developed better approaches at teaching with technology with the addition of individual laptops for all students 5th grade on up and promethean boards in all core classrooms at the middle school. RtI (Response to Intervention) in reading is fully developed in our district from kindergarten through 12th grade. We are very proud of our award winning band, drama program, and FFA achievements. We feel our talents would blend well with those at PORTA. Consolidation is a scary prospect no matter who you are. Our data in this survey revealed that as educators, we are proud of A-C Central but recognize we are limited in 2 closely tied key areas: academics and finances. By all means, we want what is best for the students, district, and our two communities. We do not want to see anymore classes disappear such as home economics and accounting. We do not want any more funding for classroom needs especially in the elementary school to disappear. We do not see what more can be done without a negative impact resulting somewhere. It was said that the educators and board ratified a contract for the next 3 years that included a 3% percent raise for all teachers. That is not true. All of our veteran teachers not on the retirement track saw much less than that. We know that our enrollment increased some this year but that came with the addition of a pre-kindergarten program to our district. We do not know if the increase in enrollment will continue. We can work with PORTA to bring our groundwork in technology use to their district which would advance them more quickly. We want our students to learn with technology but we also see the value of human interaction in the classroom setting and feel that offering too many online courses to enhance the curriculum is not the answer. We are open minded when it comes to the possibility of educators losing their jobs. However, it is more important to us to think of the students first and not take an opportunity at a better education away from them. We see the potential in consolidating with PORTA and at this time, the A-C Central Education Association declares support for consolidation with PORTA as the answer to what would be best for the students, district, and the two communities in the future. Submitted by: Diane Sieving, President, A-C Central Education Association

March 2012 - Ashland Scoop Newsletter  

Ashland Scoop, Ashland, IL Newspaper

March 2012 - Ashland Scoop Newsletter  

Ashland Scoop, Ashland, IL Newspaper