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Decatur-Macon County Opportunities Corp. will receive $2.59 million for Head Start and Early Head Start programs through a federal grant, it was announced Monday.

Four other stories you should see are Central A&M's Tina McElroy retiring after 34 years, township government debated, man says vandals attacked his trees and Dennis students link with inspiring people.

Decatur nonprofit receives $2.59M for early education

Decatur-Macon County Opportunities Corporation will receive $2.59 million as part of $90.9 million federal grant for Head Start and Early Head Start programs across Illinois.

DMCOC is a nonprofit that administers anti-poverty programs through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. An agency representative did not immediately return a request for comment.

Tina McElroy retires from Central A&M after 34 years

Tina McElroy, a previous H&R Track Coach of the Year, is known to her students as “Mac.”

After spending her 34-year career all in the same district at Central A&M, beginning when it was still Moweaqua High School, “Mac” will retire at the end of the school year, but she's not leaving teaching entirely.

“I'm still keeping my hand in,” she said.

Should townships go away? Legislature may weigh in

Wth rising property taxes and ballooning state debt, the push to reduce the number of townships and eliminate layers of local government is gaining momentum.

Lawmakers on both sides are pushing through legislation to make consolidation more feasible, with those efforts so far zeroing in on townships.

Decatur an says vandals damaging his trees

Police are investigating after a Decatur homeowner reported repeated tree theft and criminal damage to his property, the back of which faces Lake Decatur.

Sgt. Josh Sheets said the latest incident was reported Sunday when the 66-year-old homeowner, who lives on North Country Club Road, said someone had taken an ax to a northern spruce tree on his property.

Dennis students link with inspiring people

Several weeks ago, Dennis School students in Brittany Acree and Keith Creighton's classes received an assignment for a project dubbed “Chain Reaction.”

The middle schoolers were to think of someone who inspired them ask that person who had inspired them and follow the chain through five people.

“They weren't always successful in getting all five people,” Acree said as the students worked on creating books about their chains.

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