Coverdell ESA vs. South Carolina ESA

January 6, 2024
Trees in front of indiana statehouse

When the South Carolina Education Scholarship Account (ESA) legislation was being written, there was the option of naming it an Education Savings Account (ESA). South Carolina legislators chose not to do this because of the confusion it might create with federal Coverdell Education Savings Accounts.     The key difference aside from state versus federal law is whose money funds the

Find an independent or private school

January 6, 2024
Girls in school uniform studying in the library

If a child receives an ESA, a wide range of educational services opens. Tuition and transportation for a South Carolina private (independent) school is just one option for ESA spending. If you think a private school may be an option for your family, the South Carolina Department of Education provides a list.This list does not necessarily

Are ESAs constitutional?

January 6, 2024
Close up photo of a wooden gavel

Yes. Even as the U.S. Supreme Court has overwhelmingly upheld school choice programs of all stripes, state Constitutional questions born of bigoted anti-Catholic Blaine Amendments have routinely plagued voucher programs. However, Education Savings Accounts have withstood Blaine Amendment challenges precisely because of their legal differences from vouchers. Arizona, home of the nation’s oldest ESA program, provides the framework.

Aren’t independent schools FULL and EXPENSIVE?

January 6, 2024
Interior of abandoned building

The South Carolina ESA is worth $6,000 per year for tuition and books with up to $750 in additional funds for transportation. Isn’t that woefully inadequate? Isn’t private (independent) school tuition north of $20,000? What about available seats? Aren’t most private schools running at capacity? EdChoice conducted a survey of South Carolina private schools in 2018 to get at some of these questions.  Here

What type of expenses are eligible?

January 6, 2024
Man carrying a baby

• Tuition and fees of an education service provider • Textbooks, curriculum, or other instructional materials including, but not limited to, any supplemental materials or associated online instruction required by either a curriculum or an education service provider • Tutoring services approved by the Department of Education • Computer hardware or other technological devices that are used primarily

What is an ESA?

January 4, 2024
People wearing backpacks

ABOUT THE NEW SOUTH CAROLINA ESA’S < Back                                                             Recent Posts Every child deserves the opportunity to receive an education that prepares her or him to

How do ESAs work?

January 4, 2024
Focused students using laptop

• Parents of eligible students apply for an account funded by a designated portion of general fund state funds. • Education service providers apply to be included in the group of providers where funds from the ESA may be used. • Following the application and approval process, parents would be granted access to a special