Year One of Tax Credit Scholarships in Illinois
March 8, 2019

With more than 40,000 students already in line for an Illinois Tax Credit Scholarship this fall, Empower Illinois breaks down the first year of the program in their Year One report.

The Invest in Kids Act—the largest tax credit scholarship program in the country at inception, included as part of a larger state funding overhaul—offers 75 cents on the dollar in income tax credits to individuals and businesses that make donations to one of several scholarship granting organizations.

Empower Illinois, a statewide Scholarship Granting Organization, supports schools in their tax credit fundraising efforts, while assisting students and their families through the scholarship process.

According to the Year One report, in its first year, Empower Illinois received more than 30,000 student applications through the program. Other Year One highlights include:

  • 5,459 scholarships awarded
  • $6,669 for the average scholarship, roughly full cost of the average tuition
  • More than 400 participating schools across the state

The report highlights that seventy-four percent of scholarship recipients came from families living at or below 185 percent of the federal poverty level — roughly $46,435 for a family of four. It also shares regional data, including student demographics, school participation, and donors broken down by specific areas of the state.

You can read more about the policy change that created the program here. Interested in learning more about Empower Illinois’ work? Reach out.


Evy Valencia Jackson

Evy is a consultant for the PIE Network and a National Fellow at 50CAN.


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