Family Empowerment Scholarship

podcastED: Interview with a scholarship parent who became eligible under Florida’s 2021 school choice expansion

On this episode, reimaginED Senior Writer Lisa Buie talks with Megan Luten, a mother of three from Jacksonville, Florida, whose 5-year-old daughter, Ellie, attends Catholic kindergarten thanks to the Family Empowerment Scholarship Education Options scholarship. Luten, a speech therapist, discusses the search she and her husband, Jameson, a registered nurse,[Read More…]

Jewish school choice advocacy group Teach Florida thanks lawmakers for support at annual breakfast

More than 600 people joined Teach Florida’s board and staff for the organization’s annual legislative breakfast this week at the Signature Grand in Davie, Florida. Attendees included state legislators, elected local officials and members of the Jewish day school communities of Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties. The focus of[Read More…]

A parent’s story: How a Florida education choice scholarship may have saved my daughter’s life

Editor’s note: This first-person essay from Florida mother Debra Manning debuted on the American Federation for Children’s Voices for Choice website. Rayonna faced some challenges in school with somebody that was once her friend. This girl started to bully my daughter because she did not want Rayonna to talk to[Read More…]

podcastED: Formerly homeless family finds a lifeline in education choice scholarships

On this episode, reimaginED senior writer Lisa Buie talks with Juliette Harrell, an Orlando, Florida, mother of three children, two of whom attend private school thanks to the Family Empowerment Scholarship Economic Options program. Lacking education in financial literacy, Harrell and her husband, Allen, experienced homelessness as teenage parents. Their[Read More…]

Word for Word: Mom Melissa Demain on finding the best fit for her daughter

Editor’s note: This Palm Coast, Florida, mom was happy with the school her daughter, Abby, attended with assistance from a Florida Tax Credit Scholarship. Then Abby, who had been diagnosed with a special need at age 3, became a teenager and started to struggle. Demain once again found herself seeking[Read More…]

State officials expand school choice scholarship eligibility to families in military reserves

More military families will be able to qualify for state K-12 education choice scholarships due to a rule change approved today by the Florida Board of Education. The rule was made in response to the passage of HB 7045, which expanded scholarship eligibility to dependents of active duty military families.[Read More…]

Scholarship eligibility expanding as applications rise

More than 204,000 students already have applied for Florida private school scholarships for the 2021-22 academic year, up 34% from the same time last year. That amount may surge as new, expanded eligibility requirements take effect today. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed SB 7045 into law May 11; the change became[Read More…]

Study details change in Gardiner families’ spending patterns

The longer students remain on Florida’s Gardiner Scholarship program, the more likely their parents are to spend money on curriculum, tutoring and specialized services, a new working paper finds. The study, “Distribution of Education Savings Accounts Usage Among Families,” by Michelle Lofton of the University of Georgia and Martin Lueken[Read More…]