How It Works

In the 2017-18 school year, Step Up awarded more than 100,000 scholarships to lower-income students through the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program. Additionally, Step Up helps administers the Gardiner Scholarship Program and provides scholarships to nearly 10,000 students with certain special needs.

In 2018, the Florida Legislature created the Hope Scholarship Program. This program was established to provide the parent of a public-school student who was subjected to violence, harassment, and or bullying the opportunity to transfer the student to another public school or request a scholarship for the student to enroll in and attend an eligible private school.

Beginning on October 1, 2018, the purchaser of a motor vehicle is given a dollar-for-dollar sales tax credit against any tax imposed by the state and collected by a dealer or private tag agent, up to $105, for a contribution to Step Up For Students. The funds invested provide K-12 Hope scholarships for children negatively impacted by bullying, violence and/or harassment.

This innovative scholarship opportunity allows students who are systemically bullied to refocus on their education by providing financial assistance to attend a Florida Department of Education-approved private school or for transportation to an out-of-district public school.

Information For Automobile Dealers

What Is The Hope Scholarship

In March 2018, the Florida Legislature enacted the Hope Scholarship Program to provide the parent of a public school student who was subjected to battery, harassment, hazing, bullying, kidnapping, physical attack, robbery, sexual offenses, threat or intimidation, or fighting at school the opportunity to transfer that student to another public school or to request a scholarship for the student to enroll in and attend an eligible private school.

How It Impacts Auto Dealers

The Hope Scholarship is funded by sales tax credits on the purchase of a motor vehicle. Beginning October 1, 2018, the purchaser of a motor vehicle will be given a 100% sales tax credit, up to $105, for a contribution to Step Up For Students to support the Hope Scholarship Program. Dealers provide the purchaser with the Contribution Election Form, collect the contribution, remit the contribution to Step Up and report the contributions to the Florida Department of Revenue. Click here to view the FAQs

Step 1

At the time of purchase, a dealer shall provide the purchaser of the motor vehicle the contribution election form, as provided by the Department of Revenue.

Step 2


The dealer shall collect the eligible contributions.


Step 3

By the 20th of each month, the dealer will submit the Hope Scholarship Program Dealer Collection Report, Form DR-HS2 to the Florida Department of Revenue. The fastest and easiest way to complete the Hope Scholarship Program - Dealer Contribution Collection Report is online at https://taxapps.floridarevenue.com/HopeScholarship. You may also report by submitting the paper Hope Scholarship Program - Dealer Contribution Collection Report.

Step 4

By the 20th of each month, dealers who receive contributions will remit those contributions to Step Up For Students through the secure online payment portal at www.StepUpForHope.org along with a copy of the Hope Scholarship Program – Dealer Contribution Collection Report. Checks can also be mailed to Step Up For Students, ATTN: Hope Processing,  PO BOX 645707

Cincinnati, Ohio 45264-5707

Step 5

Dealers who receive contributions must separately report them on their sales and use tax returns beginning October 1, 2018. Instructions for the sales tax return can be found here.

Frequently Asked Questions For Automobile Dealers

When does the Hope Scholarship go into effect?

Am I required to give the purchaser the Contribution Election form?

What form do I show the car purchaser?

How much of the sales tax can be redirected?

How often do I remit payment to Step Up For Students?

When is payment due to Step Up For Students?

How do I report to the DOR the amount that I submitted to Step Up?

What am I required to report to the DOR?

How can Step Up For Students help me market this program and our involvement?

Are used and new car purchases available to participate?

Are leased vehicles eligible for participation?

How do I submit payment to Step Up For Students?

Is there a cap on the Hope Scholarship Program, and how will a dealer or tax collector’s office know when the cap is reached?

Are sales taxes on auxiliary purchases made at the time of vehicle purchase available to be invested in the Hope Scholarship Program?

I have more questions, who should I contact?

Information For Car Purchasers


Beginning on October 1, 2018, automobile purchasers will be authorized to receive a dollar-for-dollar tax credit, up to $105, on the sales tax imposed by the state as a result of the purchase of a motor vehicle in Florida in return for a designation to the Hope Scholarship Program, administered by Step Up For Students. The amount of the contribution to Step Up For Students will be deducted from the total sales tax liability. The purchasers may not designate a specific student as the beneficiary of the contribution.


How many kids are bullied in Florida?

How do I help a bullied child?

How much money of the sales tax can I donate/designate?

How easy is the process?

Will this qualify as a charitable deduction for my personal income taxes?

Can I designate to a specific student or school?

Where can I find out about other scholarships offered by Step Up?

How does the child qualify? How much is the scholarship? And, how many scholarships are given?

Do I have to decide at the time of purchase?

I have more questions, who should I contact?

Information For County Tax Collectors

What Is The Hope Scholarship

In March 2018, the Florida Legislature enacted the Hope Scholarship Program to provide the parent of a public school student who was subjected to battery, harassment, hazing, bullying, kidnapping, physical attack, robbery, sexual offenses, threat or intimidation, or fighting at school the opportunity to transfer that student to another public school or to request a scholarship for the student to enroll in and attend an eligible private school.

How It Impacts Tax Collectors

The Hope Scholarship is funded by sales tax credits on the purchase of a motor vehicle. Beginning on October 1, 2018, the purchaser of a motor vehicle will be given a 100% sales tax credit, up to $105, for a contribution to Step Up For Students to support the Hope Scholarship Program. At the time of registration and collection of sales tax, the tax collector will provide the purchaser with a Contribution Election Form, collect the contribution, remit the contribution to Step Up and report the contributions to the Florida Department of Revenue.

Frequently Asked Questions For County Tax Collectors

When does the Hope Scholarship go into effect?

Am I required to give the purchaser the Contribution Election Form?

What form do I show the car purchaser?

How much of the sales tax can be redirected?

How often do I remit payment to Step Up For Students?

When is payment due to Step Up For Students?

How do I report to the DOR the amount that I submitted to Step Up?

What am I required to report to the DOR?

What vehicle transactions are not eligible for participation?

How do I submit payment to Step Up For Students?

Is there a cap on the Hope Scholarship Program, and how will a dealer or tax collector’s office know when the cap is reached?

Are sales taxes on auxiliary purchases made at the time of vehicle purchase available to be invested in the Hope Scholarship Program?

I have more questions, who should I contact?

How to Reach Us

If you have questions or need additional information about how you can support Florida's schoolchildren through the Hope Scholarship and Step Up For Students, please contact:

Heidie Nesset, Director of Strategic Partnership
Step Up For Students: 
Direct: 678.772.0437 | HNesset@sufs.org