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School News

Meet Brian Anderson, Principal of Yankee Ridge

July 14th, 2016

Urbana School District #116 is pleased to introduce Brian C. Anderson as our new principal of Yankee Ridge Elementary School.  Mr. Anderson will start at Yankee Ridge on July 25, 2016.  He is taking over the helm from Mrs. Mary Beth Norris, who retired on May 31 after 29 years with the District, 18 of them as principal of the elementary school. Read the rest of this entry »


Yankee Ridge celebrates Tony Dezell Day

April 8th, 2016

Friday, March 18, 2016 was TONY DEZELL DAY at Yankee Ridge.  Mr. Dezell was a teaching assistant at Yankee Ridge for many years.  Over the years, Mr. Dezell has done much for our Yankee Ridge family including organizing medivac helicopter visits, inviting readers for African American Read-In, bringing in lots of special visitors (including well known University of Illinois athletes), and coordinating an annual soul food luncheon for students in his classroom!  He recently left us for a new endeavor working for the Urbana School District #116 distribution warehouse. We are glad that we still get to see him when he comes by to deliver the school mail.

On Tony Dezell Day, Yankee Ridge staff presented Mr. Dezell with a framed “word cloud” with words that describe him, such as HARDWORKING, FUNNY, GENEROUS, HELPFUL and FRIEND.  He is very special to Yankee Ridge students and staff, and we wish him nothing but the best in his new position!


Krannert Center for the Performing Arts Welcomes YR 5th Graders

March 16th, 2016

On February 17th and 18th, Yankee Ridge 5th grade students took day long field trips to the Krannert Center for Performing Arts. The field trip was a “Behind the Scenes” look at the Krannert Center for Performing Arts. The trip focused on exploring the spaces in the center; and the set, costumes, and music connected to the University of Illinois Lyric Theatre’s production of Midsummer Night’s Dream. The students also participated in an acting workshop. A Big Tiger Paw of Thanks to the Krannert Center for Performing Arts and the University of Illinois Lyric Theatre for welcoming our 5th graders!


Yankee Ridge celebrates African American Read-In

February 11th, 2016

Yankee Ridge held it’s annual African American Read-In on Monday, February 8th. This event was created many years ago by long-time Yankee Ridge Librarian, Dorothy Vickers-Shelley.

On the morning of February 8th, twelve African American men from the larger Urbana-Champaign community visited Yankee Ridge classrooms. They each joined a class to read literature to the students written by African American authors. Some of these community members have been participating in this event and reading to Yankee Ridge students for many years.  We give a big #TigerPawOfThanks to our many volunteers who come year after year, and some who just started.


Yankee Ridge Students Celebrate the Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 27th, 2016

On Thursday, January 14th, 2016, Yankee Ridge students gathered to celebrate the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. His legacy was discussed in classrooms throughout the building as well. The assembly began with the entire school singing “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and ended with Ms. Booth’s 1st graders leading an all school sing of “We Shall Overcome.” Additional songs and dances were provided by Ms. Booth’s 1st graders, Mrs. Kaiser’s 4th graders, and a volunteer group of 5th graders under the direction of our Elementary Fine Arts, Dance teacher, Mrs. Allen. In addition, two of our 1st and 2nd grade students shared a poem about Dr. King.

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