Are You Looking For School Options For Your Child? Consider Step Up For Students.
As a parent, you know that selecting a school for your child is one of the most important decisions you’ll ever have to make. In the State of Florida, we recognize that school choice is a crucial component to ensuring that all parents have the opportunity to provide their children with access to an outstanding education. That’s why our state is the national leader in providing a wide variety of school options to meet the unique educational needs of each family.
One of the options you have for your child is religious and other nonpublic schools through Florida’s scholarship programs, including the John M. McKay Scholarship for Students With Disabilities, the Corporate Tax Credit Scholarship, and the Opportunity Scholarship Program. In this brief article, we’ll discuss how Step Up For Students in Clearwater, FL can provide your student with more school options.
What Is Step Up For Students?
Step Up for Students is a state-approved nonprofit scholarship funding organization founded in 1998 by Tampa venture capitalist John Kirtley as a solution to the lack of educational options available for low-income students. Today, the organization manages multiple scholarship programs offering five separate scholarships to thousands of Florida schoolchildren: the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program (FTC), the Gardiner Scholarship, the Hope Scholarship, the Reading Scholarship, and the Family Empowerment Scholarship (FES). The Florida Tax Credit Scholarship, on its own, is the largest scholarship program of its kind in the nation and offers scholarships to more than 100,000 low-income students.
Take Advantage of Income-Based Scholarships
There are two income-based scholarships offered to low-income students through Step For Students — the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship and the Family Empowerment Scholarship. The only major difference between the two is that while the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship allows families to choose between financial assistance toward private school OR transportation costs to a public school other than the one the student is assigned to attend, the Family Empowerment Scholarship is only to be used towards private school tuition and fees. Your student will not be found eligible for either scholarship if your family’s income is found to be between 261% – 300% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
Applications are processed in the order that they are received, and the available scholarships are awarded with a priority given to renewal families and those with the greatest financial need. That’s why it’s important to submit your application as soon as possible, ensuring that all of your financial information is accurate. For the Family Empowerment Scholarship, your child must also be either able to enroll in kindergarten or have spent the last school year in attendance at a Florida public school.
Select a Participating School
Once you’ve received your scholarship, your next step is to select one of the Step Up For Students participating schools. While there are a wide variety of participating schools in the region, you’ll want to select a school that can help your student achieve their academic, social, and career-minded goals like Lakeside Christian School. With small class sizes and a plethora of opportunities for individualized education, our students are able to grow connected with their fellow students, develop academically and spiritually, and prepare themselves for college and beyond.
If you would like to learn more about Lakeside Christian School, one of the Step Up For Students participating schools in Clearwater, FL, please give us a call at (727) 239-7808 or schedule a tour of our campus.