Illinois Tax Scholarship Information


To apply to Empower Illinois  (click here).

Empower Illinois has announced that it will re-launch the application process on February 27th at 7 PM.  This new application process will have two steps. 

RESERVE:  Families that wish to apply for the scholarships will need to go the Empower Illinois website at 7 PM on Feb. 27th to reserve their spot in line.  This reservation will require some basic information to be entered (Name, contact information, student name, student date of birth and school (if known)).   The site will be mobile friendly and should be able to be completed in a very short amount of time (under 5 minutes).

APPLICATION:  Once the reservation for application is made, families will be given a unique application link through email.  The rest of the application will need to be completed within 3 calendar days by the family to be considered for a scholarship.  The application is the part of the process that will require families to upload the documentation listed below.  Each family, regardless of number of students, will be given only one application link.

 Application links will be issued on a rolling basis over the course of several weeks to ensure the integrity of the website.  This is to help prevent the site from fear of being shut down.

If an applicant made it through part of the process on the initial launch, but has not received notification from Empower Illinois, a new application will need to be filed.  Anyone who was able to complete the application process should have already been contacted by Empower Illinois as to their status.

All of the documentation at the bottom of the page has been updated with the new information from Empower Illinois.  


02/20/18 1:30 PM


There are multiple SGO’s in Region 2 and Region 3.  Families are permitted to apply to any and all SGO’s for your area.  Each SGO is responsible for their own fundraising and most have specific schools that they are working with (as we are with Empower Illinois). 

If you decide to apply to other SGO’s, please make sure to also apply to Empower Illinois when the application is back up because we directed our donors to give to them and we believe your chances of funding will be higher.

Region 2:      Big Shoulders Fund   and  ACSI/Childrens Tuition Fund of Illinois

Region 3 (Whiteside County only) :  ACSI/Childrens Tuition Fund of Illinois


Scholarship Program Information

On August 31, 2017 the Illinois Legislature approved the Invest in Kids Act, which created an income based tax scholarship program to allow low income students more choices in education. These K-12 scholarships are based on financial need, not how well a child does in school. With this new legislation, families are able to choose to enroll in a non-public (private) school with scholarship money available for tuition and necessary fees starting on February 27th at 7 PM.

This program will be funded completely by donors who wish to help low income families have a choice in education.  If you are in a position to donate, please consider doing so!  Since Individuals will be able to direct their donations to a school or group of schools, you can help ensure that families have access to a great Catholic education.


The program information listed below is updated often.  Please check back often.

Program Overview


Empower Illinois website – click logo


Parent Information:

Information for Parents Seeking a Scholarship

Eligibility Guidelines

Frequently Asked Questions – Parents

List of Eligible Fees 

Required Documents for application (taken from Empower Illinois)


Donor Information:

Illinois Department of Revenue Website to Reserve Your Tax Credit

Information for Donors

Frequently Asked Questions – Donors Instructions


Información en español:

Información del programa

Preguntas frecuentes de la aplicación

Instrucciones de solicitud (tomadas de Empower Illinois)

Documentos necesarios

Información para donantes






Contact Elizabeth Heitkamp at or 815-399-4300.


Last Update: February 20, 2018