Tax-credit scholarships are among the fastest growing education choice programs. These programs incentivize individuals and businesses to donate to nonprofit organizations that provide private school scholarships to eligible students. In exchange for their donations, donors receive a tax credit from the state—ideally a 100%, dollar-for-dollar credit.
Tax-credit scholarship programs allow parents to select the schools best suited to the needs of their children while saving money for state and local taxpayers. Best of all, research shows that these programs boost the academic results of participating students as well as students who remain in public schools.
Tax-credit scholarship programs use entirely private funds to offer private school scholarships to families.
Learn more about Tax-Credit Scholarship Policy Solutions.
“Anyone with more than one kid understands that choice in education is paramount. Siblings can have the same parents, the same family income, eat the same food, and even have the same bedtime but still need wildly different things to learn. If we want a system that serves every kid, we have to recognize that one school cannot be the best for every kid.”
“These programs are helping students—many of them from disadvantaged families—to succeed in K-12, college and the workforce. They’re saving the state and local districts money. Most importantly, they’re giving families hope— families that in many cases would have no other way to provide their children with a quality education.”
Students using tax-credit scholarship accounts in 2020.
Tax-credit scholarship programs in 18 states.
Montana students eligible for the state’s tax-credit scholarship program.
Number of tax-credit scholarships awarded by Florida’s scholarship administration program Step up for Students.
Cara Candal, Ed.D., is the Director of Educational Opportunity for ExcelinEd focusing on private school choice.
Tim Abram is the Associate Policy Director of Educational Opportunity for ExcelinEd.
Tax-credit scholarship programs provide educational opportunity to hundreds of thousands of students using entirely private funds. Explore these policy toolkit resources or head over to the Opportunity Learning Hub to learn more.
Private education choice options come in many forms—education scholarship accounts, tax-credit scholarship accounts and vouchers. The following resources offer tools, research and analysis to help states expand quality private education choice. For more, see our education choice overview brief.
The federal government has expanded 529 college savings plans to include qualified expenses for elementary and secondary education (public, private or religious). In doing so, educational opportunity has increased for families across the country. Now, in addition to using account funds for college expenses, a family can choose to use up to $10,000 annually toward qualified K-12 expenses. Learn how states are responding and find out why some states approving and others rejecting these plans
This brief details what 529 savings plans are, how they’ve changed and which states allow residents to use them.View More
What turns everyday moms and dads from behind-the-scenes classroom helpers into bold education advocates? Learn from five parents who bravely fought for their child’s education… and won! We’ll explore how to empower parents in your state and how, by sharing their personal stories, these families opened the door to opportunity and changed the lives of countless students.
Across the nation, policy changes and new initiatives this year are significantly impacting private education choice. State lawmakers, for example, have looked to create new options for bullied students as well as for working-class students, who are losing access to private education. At the federal level, passage of tax reform has led to impacts—some expected, some unexpected—on resources for private education. This session provides an overview of major changes in 2018 as well as a look at what’s next for educational opportunity in 2019.