Chicago, IL (November 11, 2013) – The Archdiocese of Chicago's Office of Catholic Schools has announced the initial results of the Caritas Scholars program. This $2 million, pilot, financial aid initiative for Catholic school students and their families is part of a three-year, $6 million commitment being made possible through the generosity of an anonymous donor.
For this current 2013-2014 school year, the program is supporting 622 students in 56 Catholic schools in Chicago, Cook and Lake counties, each of whom is receiving a scholarship of up to 50 percent of their tuition through Caritas Scholars. These students come from families who need financial assistance to send their children to a Catholic school and share an appreciation for the benefits and values of a Catholic school education. The Caritas Scholars pilot program is intended to act as a catalyst for the $150 million scholarship fund called for in the To Teach Who Christ Is campaign.
"Our principals worked very hard with families to make this program a success," noted Sr. M. Paul McCaughey, O.P., Superintendent of Schools. "We wanted a high level of accountability to our donor and to our school communities."
The Caritas Scholars program is intended for qualifying families, with children enrolling for the first time in kindergarten through eighth grade. The incremental enrollment gains are targeted to stabilize the financial viability of these Catholic schools and strengthen their ability to deliver a rigorous, engaging and faith-filled educational program to their communities.
Once the To Teach Who Christ Is scholarship fund reaches its $150 million goal, over $6 million will be awarded in need-based financial grants to students and their families each year.
As funds are raised from parishes participating in the To Teach Who Christ Is Campaign over the next three years, 60 percent will remain in the parish and 40 percent will go to the Archdiocese. A percentage of the monies going to the Archdiocese will be directed to grow the scholarship fund.
For more information about Caritas Scholars, please contact the Office of Catholic Schools at 312-534-5299. More information about the Campaign is available by visiting, www.ToTeachWhoChristIs.org.