Manar announces $2 million in grants to local schools to help expand access to remote learning technology

remote school 092320BUNKER HILL – Local schools are set to receive nearly $2 million in grants to improve students’ access to remote learning technology, State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) announced Wednesday.

“Many school districts have employed a remote or hybrid learning model to protect staff and students during the pandemic,” Manar said. “These funds can help provide every child with the resources they need to stay engaged in their education during this difficult time.”

Digital Equity Formula Grants, funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, are intended to help schools bridge the digital divide and offer students more reliable access to the technology they need to participate in e-learning. School districts can use the funds to expand connectivity and provide students with devices like computers or tablets.

More than $80 million was awarded to 471 districts across the state, including 16 school districts in the 48th State Senate District:

  • Taylorville CUSD 3 - $159,778
  • Pana CUSD 8 - $98,372
  • South Fork SD 14 - $45,472
  • Hillsboro CUSD 3 - $116,404
  • Litchfield CUSD 12 - $102,887
  • Nokomis CUSD 22 - $61,450
  • Macon-Piatt Regional Office of Education #39 - $66,840
  • Decatur SD 61 - $496,087
  • Regional Office of Education #40 - $32,269
  • Carlinville CUSD 1 - $106,182
  • Mount Olive CUSD 5 - $53,839
  • Staunton CUSD 6 - $98,300
  • Gillespie CUSD 7 - $96,810
  • Bunker Hill CUSD 8 - $61,134
  • Southwestern CUSD 9 - $104,973
  • North Mac CUSD 34 - $97,941


Funding was distributed using a need-based formula. The full list of schools receiving funds is available on the Illinois State Board of Education’s website.

Manar encourages Macon County residents to take advantage of mobile COVID-19 testing site

covid 19 5057462 640DECATUR – To keep pace with the State of Illinois’ testing goals, State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) is encouraging residents to take advantage of a mobile COVID-19 testing site in Decatur this weekend.

“The State of Illinois has implemented a robust statewide testing operation, but we cannot let up. Continuing to meet our testing goals is one of the key tools we have at our disposal to fight the spread of COVID-19,” Manar said. “Taking advantage of this free opportunity to get tested will pay dividends for you, your loved ones, and your community. Slowing the spread of COVID-19 takes effort from all of us, and I urge everyone who is able to get tested.”

Manar urges local business owners to apply for next wave of Business Interruption Grants

Sen. Andy ManarSPRINGFIELD – To curb the devastating economic effects brought on by COVID-19, State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) is encouraging small business owners to apply for the second round of Business Interruption Grants, a key piece of the State of Illinois’ pandemic response effort.

Manar, the Senate Appropriations II Committee Chair, fought to ensure necessary funding for this program during last spring’s budget negotiations.

Manar, Pritzker encourage Macon County residents to complete 2020 Census

manar census 091020DECATUR – With the deadline to complete the 2020 Census looming, State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) was joined by Governor JB Pritzker and local leaders at the Decatur Public Library for a press conference Wednesday afternoon to encourage residents of Macon County to complete the 2020 census.

“When your city council and your mayor sit down to formulate budgets, they need all the help they can get. Everyone needs to be counted so our communities have the revenue necessary to maintain the quality of our roads, schools, hospitals, and other programs people rely on,” Manar said. “Every last dollar is going to count as we continue to navigate our way through the COVID-19 crisis, so please take just a few minutes and fill out that census. This simple action will result in a positive impact on your community that will be felt for the next decade.”

Seven municipalities in Macon County have a response rate of 64% or higher. The cities and villages are:

  • Forsyth 83.8%
  • Zion 81.4%
  • Harristown: 75.4%
  • Blue Mound: 68.4%
  • Niantic: 66.8%
  • Decatur 66.2%
  • Warrensburg: 64.1%

"I’m here today because I want to be sure the Decatur community gets its fair share and that all of you get counted," said Pritzker. "It will bring more investment, better schools, better roads and better health care to your community – and you and your family. Call your friends and neighbors or send them a text or email and urge them all to do their part: just like voting, filling out the census is an act of civic engagement – a demand to be fully heard and fully counted."

Residents can complete the census for their household and check response rates in their area at

Sen. Andy Manar

Sen. Andy Manar

48th Senate District

Years served:2013 - Present

Committee assignments: Agriculture; Appropriations I; Appropriations II (Chairperson); Education; Executive Appointments (Vice-Chairperson); Subcommittee on Capital (AP) (Sub-Chairperson); Subcommittee on Special Issues (ED); Labor; Opioid Crisis Abatement Spec. Com..

Biography: Born November 15, 1975, in Bunker Hill; B.A. in History, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville; past chairman of Macoupin County Board; married (wife, Trista), has three children.

Associated Representatives:
Avery Bourne
Sue Scherer