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October 2011 Archives

Thumbnail image for emily.jpgTrick or treat!

Yup, the bewitching hour is just about upon us: Trick-or-treating begins at 3 p.m. today in many of our towns. Here are some tips to make that as safe and enjoyable as possible, from the city of St. Charles:

  • Limit your child's "Trick or Treating" to trick-or-treating hours in your community. (Check The Courier-News' list for those hours in your town here.)

  • Young children should be accompanied by their parents or another responsible adult.

  • If there is a chance they will be out after dark, one member of each group should carry a flashlight.

  • Stress to your children they watch for traffic.

  • Have them walk on the sidewalk and cross the street at intersections.

  • Check that your child's costume fits properly and they can see well.

  • Examine all candy before allowing children to eat it.

  • Children should be dressed in light colored costumes, and short enough to prevent tripping.

  • If they do wear dark-colored clothing, add reflective tape or reflectors.

And for those of you too old to trick-or-treat (is there such a thing?):

  • Motorists, be especially observant, and watch for children who are not being alert for cars.

  • All residents are encouraged to utilize outside lighting for the safety of the trick-or-treaters.

  • Also, close and lock their car and garage doors to reduce the opportunity of theft and vandalism.

And when all is said and done, send your Readers' Reporter some photos of yourself, your kids or your pets in costume via Twitter at @couriernews or email at (I'm a little bummed to be working Halloween night, and I don't want to miss out!) You just may see your photos on this blog tomorrow!

-- Emily McFarlan, Readers' Reporter

Thumbnail image for emily.jpg So what is the secret of Munger Road?

If you mean the actual road that runs between Stearns and Army Trail roads on the border of Bartlett and Wayne, the one crossed by the railroad tracks supposedly haunted by a busload of ghost children, then the Elgin Paranormal Investigators and Bartlett Police Department were gracious enough to help me investigate its secrets. Those secrets are revealed in my article "Secrets of Munger Road."

You can hear my discussion with the Elgin Paranormal Investigators about all the urban legends set along Munger Road and our abbreviated investigation there on their Blog Talk Radio show below:

Listen to internet radio with EPI Para Radio on Blog Talk Radio

If you mean the recently released movie filmed in Bartlett and St. Charles, well, it left me wondering a few things, too.

Secrets and SPOILERS, after the jump.

Thumbnail image for danahey2 copy.jpgNOTE: In a revival of this "classic" Friday feature, Courier-News reporter Mike Danahey guesses how much beer (or other beverage of choice) it might take him to pay money to see a recently-released movie. His opinions are based on trailers, ads and advance hype.

Here are some of the movies playing this weekend...

In Time

In the future, you live to 25, then have 365 more days until you die. This looks like a dozen other gimmick-based movies. I have a better idea. Anyone who goes on reality TV must be killed during the course of the show.

Beer rating: A bucket of Bud Light, then some Red Bull with Jaegermeister, like the kids enjoy.

Anonymous, The Rum Diary, after the jump.

Thumbnail image for danahey2 copy.jpgNOTE: In a revival of this "classic" Friday feature, Courier-News reporter Mike Danahey guesses how much beer (or other beverage of choice) it might take him to pay money to see a recently-released movie. His opinions are based on trailers, ads and advance hype.

Here are some of the movies playing this weekend...

Ides of March

I was hoping this was a movie about the band from Chicago. Alas, the title is an allusion to Shakespeare, which must make George Clooney's guy running for the Democratic nomination for President, Julius Caesar, and aide Ryan Gosling, Brutus. I find today's politics more black comedy than classic drama. And the perpetual running for the highest office in the land has left me too jaded to see a movie about the topic.

Beer rating: March means Guinness. Maybe some of their Black Lager. That seems ominous enough.

Real Steel, after the jump.

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for emily.jpgI heard a rumor Community Unit School District 300 Superintendent Michael Bregy planned to speak at Monday night's Hoffman Estates Village Board meeting.

Which wasn't entirely true.

Bregy did speak -- but so did District 300 Board of Education President Anne Miller, Advance 300 Chair Nancy Zettler, Board Legislative Committee member Kathy Burley, a teacher, a parent and a student. And they were just a small part of the District 300 teachers, parents, students, board members and administrators who turned out, more than half of the audience at the meeting.

You can read more about that -- and the village's response -- in today's article, 'D300 to Hoffman Estates: 'You haven't seen anything yet.'

And you can watch Bregy and Miller give their remarks during the public comments at Monday's meeting below:

Speakers were cut off after two minutes, although Bregy said afterward he had been told there was no time limit on public comments.

You can read his full remarks, courtesy of District 300, and see a photo of District 300 students' signs, after the jump.

Thumbnail image for emily.jpgOctober is National Bullying Prevention Month, and one Northern Illinois University conference is giving teachers some resources to do just that.

NIU will host "Bullying: How Teachers Can Respond" from 8 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14, in the Holmes Student Center on the school's DeKalb campus (click here for directions on the school's website).

At the professional development conference, administrators, teachers, and staff members can earn CPDUs and learn how to can best respond to the issue of bullying in their schools. It's a first-time collaborative effort between the external programming offices of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and the College of Education, according to NIU.

Speakers will include:

  • Dorothy Espelage, associate chair of the Department of Educational Psychology, Child Development Division, at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Espelage specializes in bullying, youth aggression, and peer harassment; recently authored a White House Brief on bullying among LGBTQ youth; and has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Today Show, CNN, CBS Evening News and Anderson Cooper 360.
  • Debbie Perryman, a U46 teacher and former Illinois Teacher of the Year whose daughter was a victim of bullying.
  • And four faculty members from NIU: Jon Crawford, assistant professor in the Department of Leadership, Educational Psychology and Foundations; Toni Tollerud, Presidential Teaching Professor of Counseling; Amy Luckner, assistant professor in the Department of Psychology; and Molly Holmes, director of the school's LGBT Resource Center.

For more information, or to register, visit

-- Emily McFarlan, Readers' Reporter

Thumbnail image for emily.jpgMore than 160,000 kids miss school every day out of fear of attack or intimidation by other students, according to the Parent Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights.

And when that happens to their kids, parents often react in one of three ways, according to PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center: Tell their children to stand up to the bully, tell them to ignore or avoid the bully or take matters into their own hands.

Instead, the center encourages parents to work with their children, believe what they are saying, be supportive and be patient.

Here are some steps parents should take when their kids are being bullied from PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center:

  • Listen: It is your child's story; let him or her tell it.
  • Believe: To be an effective advocate, you should react in a way that encourages your child to speak openly.
  • Be supportive: Tell your child it is not his fault and he does not deserve to be bullied.
  • Be patient: Your child may not be ready to open up right away due to feelings of insecurity, fear or shame. Let him talk when he is ready.
  • Provide information: Educate your child about bullying by providing information at a level he can understand.
  • Explore intervention strategies: Discuss ways to deal with the bullying. This might include talking with your child's teacher or district administration about the issue.

For more information about PACER's National Bullying Prevention Center, visit

Were you bullied as a child? Has your child been bullied? Share your tips to help other students and parents dealing with bullying in the comments below.

-- Emily McFarlan, Readers' Reporter

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for emily.jpgWant to know how much a specific administrator in your school district makes? How much the district will cover in pension and health insurance costs this year?

All that information must be posted on those districts' websites by Oct. 1 this year, according to Illinois Public Act 96-0434.

That doesn't make it easy to find, though. So we've dug through the websites of three of our local school districts to find direct links to that information so you don't have to.

Here's where you can find administrator salaries in:

-- Emily McFarlan, Readers' Reporter

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from October 2011 listed from newest to oldest.

September 2011 is the previous archive.

November 2011 is the next archive.

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