Georgia scholarship tax credit plan to benefit students

More than $50 million in donations has been approved for dispersal as scholarships by the Georgia Department of Revenue as part of the Georgia Scholarship Tax Credit Program, enabling many students to earn a college education at private schools across the state.

Now in its third year of operation, the initiative allows individuals and corporations to claim donations to the scholarship fund as tax deductibles. This year, donors gave the maximum amount permitted under the plan, and more than 6,000 students benefited from the program last year. Individuals are allowed to donate a maximum of $1,000 towards the scholarship fund, and corporations can give up to 75 percent of their total tax liability.

"Generous donations to the scholarship tax credit program are giving thousands of Georgia children access to a better education and the opportunity for a brighter future," Betsy DeVos, chairman of the American Federation for Children, said in a statement. "We're hopeful that Governor [Nathan] Deal and Georgia legislators will continue efforts to further empower parents to choose the schools that work best for their children."

Scholarships are vital to many college students, especially in today's challenging economic climate. According to Inside Higher Ed, the number of schools awarding merit-based financial aid has increased substantially in the past 15 years, especially in southern states.

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