For Donors: Help Children and Earn Tax Credits

In 2001, the Florida Legislature created the Florida Tax Credit (FTC) Scholarship Program to provide lower income Florida families more choices in the education options available for their children.  Through the FTC Scholarship Program, the Florida Department of Revenue gives dollar-for-dollar tax credits to companies that contribute their eligible tax dollars to fund the K-12, income-based education scholarships.  Participating companies have the unique opportunity to provide educational opportunities to Florida’s economically disadvantaged children while earning dollar-for-dollar tax credits.

The scholarships are based on financial need. Families may choose between financial assistance toward private school tuition and fees, or with transportation costs to attend a public school in another district.

Applications are processed in the order they are received and are awarded with priority given to renewal families followed by new families with the greatest financial need. Scholarships can be transferred to other eligible schools if the student moves within the state, or simply wants to attend a different Step Up partner school.

Since 2002, the corporate community has committed more than approximately $2.7 billion, which has funded over 575,000 scholarships. We invite your corporation to join us in this vital effort as we strive to ensure all children have equal opportunity to achieve their maximum potential through education.  Corporate contributions receive dollar-for-dollar credits for the following Florida liabilities:

  • Corporate Income Tax
  • Insurance Premium Tax
  • Direct Pay Sales & Use Tax
  • Alcoholic Beverage Excise Tax
  • Oil and/or Gas Severance Tax

By getting involved, you can make a meaningful contribution to the lives of low-income children. Step Up For Students believes all children have the right to access the learning environment that best meets their needs.

Participation is simple and easy. For more information and to participate, call (866) 344-9553.

Download a brief summary of the scholarship program.

Program Facts

  • Eligible tax liabilities include: corporate income, insurance premium, alcohol beverage excise, direct pay sales and use and/or oil and gas severance tax liabilities.
  • Florida’s Department of Revenue gives participating corporations a dollar-for-dollar tax credit for every dollar contributed to the scholarship fund.
  • Parent household income level must fall within established financial and Scholarship Funding Organizations verify each family’s income every year. In the 2016-17 school year, the average income of a benefiting scholarship family is $25,393 – merely 4.4 percent above the Federal Poverty Line (FPL).
  • Giving to the Tax Credit Scholarship Program does not interfere with other philanthropic giving.
  • Scholarships that pay for students’ transportation to an out-of-district public school are worth up to $750.
  • Scholarships that pay for private school tuition are limited to up to $6,342 for Kindergarten–5th grade, $6,631 for 6th-8th grade and $6,919 for 9th-12th grade for the 2017-18 school year or the cost of tuition, whichever is less.
  • As of Jan. 3, 2017, the program’s funding cap increased to $698 million, which will allow Step Up For Students to serve additional children for the upcoming school year.

Other links:

How the Tax Credit Works
Participating Donors
Contact the Development Team
Reserve Tax Credits

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