Schol­ar­ships an­nounced for county pri­vate schools

Daily Times (Primos, PA) - - NEWS - By Kevin Tustin ktustin@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @Kev­inTustin on Twit­ter

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.

KEVIN TUSTIN — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

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.

KEVIN TUSTIN — DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

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.

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