Scholarships announced for county private schools
ASTON » Families will benefit from tens of thousands of dollars in scholarships that will contribute to their children retaining a private school education.
The Bridge Educational Foundation announced Wednesday morning at Holy Family Regional School $63,500 in available money for the 201819 school year through the state’s Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program, which provides financial assistance to those looking to sustain a child’s education from kindergarten through 12th grades with money contributed by private businesses. Braskem America, Enterprise Holdings and Waste Management Inc. made donations to Bridge that made the scholarships possible.
Cardinal O’Hara High School in Marple, Drexel Neumann Academy in Chester, Lansdowne Friends in Lansdowne, St. Cornelius School in Chadds Ford, St. Cyril Alexandria School in East Lansdowne and the Widener University Child Development Center in Chester will receive a portion of the tuition scholarships which will then be divided up to select families.
“The EITC is providing families in Delaware County and throughout the state with a choice,” said Bridge Chairman Pete Gleason. “The program has paired community minded businesses like Braskem, Enterprise Holdings and Waste Management with families for close to two decades.”
Representatives from the donating businesses were on hand for the scholarship announcement as were state Rep. Stephen Barrar, R-160 of Upper Chichester, and state Sen. Tom Killion, R-9 of Middletown.
“Every parent should have the choice of where they send their child and the type of education they want their children to have,” said Barrar, whose grandson benefitted from EITC when attending kindergarten at St. Thomas the Apostle School in Glen Mills. “I know first hand how valuable this is and what it means to a parent to have that choice.”
Killion said he and Barrar will be looking to expand funding on the program when they return to Harrisburg to work on the 2018-19 budget. Current estimates provided by the state budget office have funding for the program at $135 million.
Braskem Legal Counsel Bilal Ezzeddine, a Detroit native, said he was not privy to a good public school when growing up, and public schools are dependent on how wealthy the area is and how well they’re funded.
“It was truly a miracle that a scholarship fell into my lap and I was able to go to a really good high school and it changed my life forever,” he said.
Parent Fran Griffith has a fourth grade daughter at Holy Family and she said the EITC was helpful in funding a few years of her early education.
“Without help from the amazing companies and the legislators to vote to keep it going we wouldn’t be here,” she said. “We wouldn’t be able to go to this school, have a great education – in my opinion is better than a public school education.”
Since 2001 the EITC allows businesses to receive tax credits for donations to up to 1,300 approved scholarship, educational improvement and/or prekindergarten scholarships organizations. Bridge has been a scholarship organization since 2005 and has helped 20,000 families throughout the commonwealth since its inception.
“We hope that with the support of the local lawmakers the EITC will continue to grow and help families choose their best educational options for man decades to come,” said Gleason.
Bridge Educational Foundation Chairman Pete Gleason announces $63,500 worth of scholarships they will provide to families in select private schools made possible by donations from Braskem America, Enterprise Holdings and Waste Management Inc.
Students from Regional Family including, from left, eighthgrader Grace Stewart, seventh-grader Victoria Conner and eighth-grader Regina Smith, listen as business leaders talk about the EITC program and the skills needed for their varied jobs.