News and information about Step Up For Students
Dear Parents and Guardians,
We hope you had a wonderful summer! It's hard to believe we're at the beginning of another school year, but here we are again. As this new school year begins, Step Up For Students is making a change with our quarterly newsletter. We will no longer send out paper versions of our newsletter as we have converted to an E-Newsletter format. We're excited about it and we hope you are, too. We have created a clean, user-friendly newsletter, which we hope you find inviting. The stories are easy to find by clicking on the links. Here, you will find your usual features like the Student and School Spotlights, Donor Corner, and important news about our two scholarship programs.
In this issue, you will learn about the new and improved reimbursement system for our Personal Learning Scholarship Accounts. We are also introducing you to our new Step Up For Students blog, "Stepping Beyond the Scholarship," where you can read stories about all things Step Up and beyond, in between quarterly newsletters. We hope you enjoy our stories. And remember, if you have a story to tell, please let us know.
Thank you for reading and have a wonderful 2015-16 school year,
Your Friends at Step Up For Students
New PLSA reimbursement system launches in early September

Summer has come to a close, and Step Up For Students looks forward to serving more students than ever this school year. An estimated 78,000 income-based scholars are expected to enroll in private schools throughout Florida and increased funding will allow us to award double the number of tudents we served last year with Personal Learning Scholarship Accounts (PLSA).
Step Up For Students prepares to roll out new program to assist low-income students in south Pinellas

Volunteer Florida, the Governor's Commission on Community Service, recently awarded Step Up For Students an AmeriCorps Grant to assist low-income students in south Pinellas County with supplemental education services to boost their academic achievement.

Graduate Spotlight: Savannah Lang

Rhonda Ford wanted more of a say in her only child's education. But the divorced mom and self-employed massage therapist thought her options were limited to her neighborhood school.
Then one day in 2002, Ford learned about Step Up For Students and the income-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship. Once the family received approval, Ford enrolled Savannah Lang into kindergarten at Merritt Island Christian School (MICS) for the 2002-03 school year.
School Spotlight: Merritt Island Christian School

If Principal Jamie Bopp could use only one word to describe  Merritt Island Christian School  (MICS), it would be "family."

"Our family environment creates a culture of genuine love for one another," he said. "We seek to live out our mission ... and we are constantly asking ourselves what's best for our students?"

  Read more .
 Donor Corner: Allegiant Travel Company
Allegiant Travel Company specializes in linking travelers in small, underserved cities to world-class leisure destinations through its low-cost, high-efficiency, all-jet passenger airline. The company also offers other travel-related products such as hotel rooms, rental cars, and attraction tickets.

Corporate Donor Update

The corporate community's generous support of Step Up For Students set a new record in commitments to the scholarship program in 2015 and we are honored to announce that the program's $447 million cap has been fully subscribed. Our corporate partners embrace our mission to deliver equal educational opportunity to Florida's underprivileged schoolchildren.  It is through their support that Step Up is able to provide a better outlook for the future of Florida's low-income students.
With grateful appreciation, we recognize the following corporations for their commitments to Step Up For Students.  
-Debbie Woerner, executive vice president of development, Step Up For Students
Step Up For Students Earns Highest Rating from Charity Navigator for Fourth Consecutive Year

For the fourth consecutive year, Step Up For Students has earned a four-star rating for sound fiscal management and commitment to accountability and transparency from Charity Navigator, the nation's largest independent charity watchdog.
Read more .
Step Up For Students launches new blog

Step Up For Students launched a new blog this month called "Stepping Beyond the Scholarship."
The blog, developed, written and edited by Step Up's marketing team, seeks to create a new online community where Step Up families, partner school teachers and administrators, Personal Learning Scholarship Accounts therapists, donors and other supporters can learn more about the programs Step Up helps administer, as well as those it serves.

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  Every child deserves the chance to succeed.
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