Leal Elementary School | 312 W. Oregon Urbana, IL 61801 | Phone: (217) 384-3618 | Fax: (217) 384-3622 BACK TO URBANA 116 DISTRICT WEBSITE »

Welcome to Leal Elementary

Leal Elementary School students

Leal is one of the oldest schools in Urbana. The site was originally the Oregon Street School and housed the Urbana Schools from 1872 until 1892. The name was later changed to Leal School.

The entire operation of Leal School is founded on a school philosophy which asserts that the ability of a student to achieve determines the level of instruction to be utilized.

The development of social responsibility in each of our students is a top priority at Leal. The Leal Rights and Responsibilities were developed to provide a consistent basis for our effort toward our general goal: to make Leal School "a good place for children and adults." The Leal School expectations are: Respect Yourself, Respect Others and Respect Property.


School News

2015 Rube Goldberg competition

March 20th, 2015

Once again, two teams made up of Leal 5th graders participated in the Rube Goldberg competition during University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign’s Engineering Open House.  This is the 6th time students from Leal have participated in the annual event.

Group one had a Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire theme, while the other group created a Doodle Jump themed machine.  Teacher Carol Smith  said both groups did an excellent job presenting their Rubes and talking about the work it took to create, as well as launching and promoting the machines.  Local engineers once again volunteered for the project and worked with the students to help design and create the Rubes.  The students who created the Harry Potter themed-Rube used a 3D printer at the UIUC FabLab to create a 3D Hedwig the owl.  This unique item was used as the launch mechanism for their machine. The Harry Potter Rube advanced to the second round of competition.

Once the students presented and launched their Rubes, the groups were able to tour the different venues of Engineering Open House.

Congratulations to all the students participating in the competition!


Leaders are Readers at Leal ASCCP!

January 30th, 2015

On Wednesday, January 28, community members from all over the area visited the After School Child Care Program at Leal Elementary for a special day. These “Leaders” of our community spoke with students and read some of their favorite books to the group.  On leader even brought some shiny hardware for the students to see.

Read the rest of this entry »

It’s that time of year again – for Pajamas!

December 2nd, 2014

Getting into the winter holiday spirit is as easy as slipping on a pair of comfy PJs.  Or, instead of slipping on a pair of comfy PJs, donating a pair of brand new pajamas to a great cause!

Once again, Mrs. Tiffany Clark and her class are spear-heading The Pajama Program fundraiser.  In cooperation with Miss Barbie Price and her classes at Urbana Middle School, our generous teams go head-to-head with their counterparts at Robeson Elementary to see who can collect the most pairs of kid-sized pjs between now and December 12.  Donations can be brand new pajamas in sizes newborn to xxxl for boys or girls.

No matter the outcome, there are winners already in this annual challenge!

For more information, please contact Mrs. Tiffany Clark at tclark@usd116.org.

The Pajama Program (pdf) – English

Programa de Pijama (pdf) – Español

Scholastic Book Fair

October 24th, 2014

Monday, October 27th 3:00- 6:30 p.m. After School Sale

Tuesday, October 28th 8:00 – 9:00 a.m. Parents Only Sale!
3:00 – 8:00 p.m. Shop before or after your Parent-Teacher Conference

Wednesday, October 29th 7:45 – 8:30 a.m. Grandparents Breakfast
11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Parents Only Sale!

Thursday, October 30th 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Bring A Friend To Lunch!
3:00 – 7:00 p.m. Shop before or after your Parent-Teacher Conference

If you are unable to visit the book fair at Leal, you may order online at bookfairs.scholastic.com/homepage/leal from Oct. 22-Nov. 5. Profits from the Book Fair are used to buy a book for every student from the PTA and to provide books for the Leal library.

Did you miss Kindergarten Connection?

May 6th, 2014

Kindergarten Connection at the Urbana Civic Center on April 8th was a success!  We had 184 families attend this first step into kindergarten!

If you missed the Kindergarten Connection and your child will be entering Kindergarten at Leal Elementary school this fall, you are encouraged to go to the school to begin the sign-up process.

At the school, you, the parent or legal guardian, will complete the registration forms, sign-up your student for an August kindergarten screening, and receive a handbook with information about Urbana’s kindergarten classes and how to ensure success for your child.

Each neighborhood elementary school has set aside time between now and the end of the school year (June 4th) for parents who missed Kindergarten Connection but still need to start the registration process.  Dates and times for Leal Elementary is listed below.  Starting the process now will help you to avoid the long “New Student” lines at Centralized Registration on July 29th – July 31st.

Kindergarten Connection/registration times for Leal Elementary school is:

Leal Elementary School
Tuesdays & Thursdays, 9:00 am – 10:30 am
(217) 384-3618

Leal School Fun Fair 2014

April 23rd, 2014

Come rain or shine, the Leal School PTA will be hosting the annual Leal Fun Fair on Friday, May 2 from 5:30–7:30pm. The Fair will take place at the school, 312 W. Oregon St, and includes fun activities for the entire family!

  • Carnival-style games, including Twister, Plinko, a Cupcake Walk, a Lollipop Tree, Soccer Bowling, and more
  • Inflatables: a Bounce House and an inflatable slide presented by Fireman Phil
  • New this year: Dunk tank running throughout the event with special guests, including Superintendent Don Owen, UHS Principal Matthew Stark, UMS Principal Scott Woods, Leal Principal Spencer Landsman, and Leal Librarian Tiffanie Bui
  • The Taste of Leal, including desserts, popcorn, and Papa John’s pizza

Brand-new Leal School t-shirts will be sold for the first time the night of Fun Fair for $10.


Presale tickets will be sold at a discount of 3 for $1 on Thursday, May 1st from 8–8:15am and 3–3:20pm, and on Friday, May 2nd from 8-8:15am on the playground by the front door. (In case of inclement weather, tickets will be sold just inside the front door.) The night of Fun Fair, tickets will be sold 2 for $1.

Example of prices for some of the games and food:
Twister (1 ticket)
Lollipop tree (1 ticket)
Helium balloons (2 tickets)
Bounce house (2 tickets)
Pizza (3 tickets)
Popcorn (1 ticket)
Lemonade (1 ticket)

Silent Auction

The Silent Auction will take place during the Leal Fun Fair and will feature over 200 donated items from local businesses, items donated by the Leal community, and the always-popular “Brain Exchange” items from parents, students, teachers, and staff. (Check out the Leal PTA website for a list of businesses that have donated to the Auction.) Some items will be available for bidding starting April 28 at the school. Anyone can bid on the items at the Fun Fair until 7:15pm. We encourage people to collect their items that evening; payments can be made by cash or check.

Fun Fair and Silent Auction is a huge community effort involving over 100 volunteers consisting of Leal parents, Leal alums, and community members. This is one of Leal’s biggest fundraisers of the year. All proceeds for the Fun Fair and Silent Auction go to Leal PTA to help all of our Leal students and teachers.


April 23rd, 2014

viernes, 2 de mayo; 5:30–7:30pm
Escuela de Leal: 312 W. Oregon, Urbana

*Lluvia o Sol*

¡Venga uno, vengan todos—la feria de la diversión de Leal algo para todo el mundo!

  • Jugar Juegos de carnaval y ganar premios, incluso “Twister”, “Plinko”, Paseo de los bizcochos, Árbol de piruletas, Boliche de futbol, y más
  • Casa hinchable y su tobogán gigante inflable con Fireman Phil
  • Nuevo evento de este año: Tanque de agua (“dunk tank”) con invitados especiales, incluso Don Owen, superintendente escolar; Matthew Stark, director de preparatoria de Urbana; Scott Woods, director de secundaria de Urbana; Spencer Landsman, director de Primaria Leal; y Tiffanie Bui, bibliotecario de Leal
  • Del Sabor de Leal, incluso postres, maíz palomero, y pizza de Papa John’s

Nuevos camisetas de Leal Escuela se venderán por primera vez la noche de la feria de diversión por $10.


Las entradas anticipadas se venderán con un descuento de 3 por $1 el jueves, 1 de mayo desde las 8-8:15 am y 3-3:20 pm, y el viernes, 2 de mayo desde las 8-8:15 am en el patio por la parte delantera puerta. (En caso de mal tiempo, los boletos se venderán dentro de la puerta frontal.) La noche de la feria de diversión, los boletos se venderán 2 por $1.

Ejemplo de los precios de algunos juegos y comida:

  • “Twister” (1 belota)
  • Árbol de piruletas (1 belota)
  • Globos con helio (2 belotas)
  • Casa hinchable (2 belotas)
  • Pizza (3 belotas)
  • Maíz palomero (1 belota)
  • Limonada (1 belota)

La subasta silenciosa

La subasta silenciosa se llevará a cabo durante la feria de diversión de Leal y contará con más de 200 artículos donados por empresas locales, los artículos donados por la comunidad Leal, y los siempre populares “intercambio de cerebros” artículos de los padres, estudiantes, maestros, y personal. (Echa un

vistazo a el sitio web de la PTA de Leal [link to: http://www.lealschoolpta.com/] para obtener una lista de las empresas que han donado a la subasta). Algunos artículos estarán disponibles para puja a partir del 28 de abril en la escuela. Cualquier persona puede pujar por los artículos en la Feria Diversión hasta las 7:15 de la tarde. Animamos a la gente a recoger los artículos que tarde; los pagos pueden hacerse en efectivo o con cheque.

La Feria de la Diversión y Subasta Silenciosa es un esfuerzo enorme comunidad que participaron más de 100 voluntarios formados por padres de Leal, antiguos alumnos y miembros de la comunidad. Este es uno de los mayores eventos para recaudar fondos de Leal del año. Todas las ganancias de la Feria de la Diversión y Subasta Silenciosa van a PTA de Leal para ayudar a todos nuestros estudiantes de Leal y maestros.

Leal Science Night 2014

March 21st, 2014

Leal Elementary will host their annual Science Night on Friday, April 4, 2014 from 6:30 to 8:00 pm.

Students and their families will have hands-on science and engineering fun with a number of different interaction stations through-out the first floor of the school.  Visitors will experience plant and wildlife science, physics, chemistry, nano-science, crop sciences, mechanical engineering, Lego robots, and much more!!!  The always-popular egg-drop challenge will be held (*please note, egg drop contest entries MUST be constructed at home this year), and there will be a 2nd grade bridge building contest (schedule provided at Science Night).

Leal Science Night is sponsored by Title I, Leal Parent-Teacher Association, and the University of Illinois Physics Department.

Leal Science Night 2014 flyer

Noche de Ciencias 2014 en Leal folleto

5th graders take 1st place in Rube Goldberg competition

March 17th, 2014

Mrs. Carol Smith’s 5th grade class took 1st place in the district Rube Goldberg competition held on Friday, March 14 during UI’s Engineering Open House (EOH2014).  This is an annual event that her class participates in.

Mrs. Smith said the PacMan themed Rube won 1st in the local competition held a few weeks prior, which gave them the opportunity to compete against nine other schools in Central Illinois in the district competition.  The event was held at the Illini Union on the UI campus during the EOH2014 weekend.  23 students from her class participated and she said that everyone helped to make the win possible.

Congratulations again to the team!

NAAPID Project Request

February 7th, 2014

Dear Leal Parents,

Monday, February 10, 2014 is NAAPID, National African American Parent Involvement Day.  This is a day specifically designated to encourage the involvement of all parents in their children’s schools.  This year we would like to ask parents to help support a project some of our 3rd and 4th grade classes are engaged in, The MLK, Jr./Presidents Day Dream Project.  This project, conceived by our speech and language teacher, Ken Paxton and classroom teachers Molly Headtke and Greg Ballweg, is a collaborative project that uses Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech as a means for students to explore their own dreams and hopes for the future and the heroes that inspire those dreams.  Students have studied heroes and their characteristics, have been writing about them, and creating a variety of projects to express their dreams and hopes which will all become part of a multimedia presentation later in the month.

We would like to ask any parents who would like to help support this effort by coming into school on Monday, February 10, 2014 between 8:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. in Mrs. Headtke’s (Room 210) and between 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. in Mr. Ballweg’s (Room 207) to help the students in the two classes work on this project.  We’d especially like parents to share with students their own heroes or people who inspired them as they have made their way through life.  Nothing formal or written is required, just come in and talk to the students and/or help them with their projects or their preparation for the presentation which will eventually be recorded on video.

Everyone has had someone, or perhaps many people, who have inspired them or given them something to dream about.  Help our students think about and reflect on what it means to be a hero and how to dream about accomplishing their goals.  We know this is a little different approach to past NAAPID activities, but we hope that we can show some of our students that there are many people supporting their hopes and dreams.

We hope to see you that day.

Yours truly,

Spencer J. Landsman              Ken Paxton                 Molly Headtke           Gregory Ballweg

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