Funding Private Christian Education
Updated: Feb 2
One could easily assume that majority of Christians would love to send their children to a school where students can openly worship God, pray, and learn about Christ. What is stopping the parents from doing so? Funding.
Well, I am here to write, that funding is not an excuse anymore! Thanks to programs like ESA and ACSTO, Arizona is leading the way for educational school choice. Any child of an Arizona resident is eligible for the Empowerment Scholarship Account as long as their child is not enrolled into a public school. The ESA funds will cover the cost of the tuition at Psalms Learning Center, plus leave extra funds to help parents pay for extra-curricular activities such as sports. Even with SOS organizations and anti-school choice governor's like Hobbs, there is still hope for Private Christian Education beyond ESA.
That hope has been around for decades and is only used by 3% of Arizona's tax payers. ACSTO, Arizona Christian School Tuition Organization, is that hope and is here to stay.
When an Arizona taxpayer makes a donation to ACSTO, they receive a dollar-for-dollar credit against their state tax liability. This means that at the end of the year, if they would normally get a refund, they’ll get a bigger refund. If they normally owe taxes, they’ll owe less. -ACSTO website
If you have been on the fence about sending your child to a Christian school or starting your own school, now is the time.
Students cannot utilize the ESA program and Tax Credit Scholarships (ACSTO) simultaneously – families need to choose the funding source that works best for their situation. However, students may be considered for scholarships from ACSTO even though they may be utilizing the ESA program to pay for their tuition, ACSTO just cannon send those funds to the school for the student’s tuition. Instead, ACSTO will hold the scholarship awards as a multi-year scholarship for that student to utilize in future years. All parents need to do is apply with ACSTO through the Parent Portal and stay enrolled in a Christian School. The best way to maximize the tax credit scholarship program is to encourage your family and friends to take advantage of the dollar-for-dollar credit. When they give, they can recommend your student(s) to be considered for scholarships. So if the ESA program is ever eliminated by anti-school choice groups, students will have scholarships waiting for them at ACSTO.