Our goal is to incentivize and reward all Catholic schools for reaching out to and accepting the poorest of the poor students so that they can experience the incredible impact of a Catholic education, and to help all Catholic Schools continue to achieve excellence by supplying much needed financial relief to their overall operating budgets. We are reaching these goals in the following two ways:
1. To provide tuition assistance to as many of the poorest families in our school system as possible.
• Partial tuition assistance to poor students who had historically been paying no tuition at all or some very small amount of tuition, helps the schools’ overall bottom line, while retaining poor students in the schools, hence keeping the mission, identity and socio-economic diversity of Catholic Schools alive.
• Every Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) grant is made to the school, not the family. Every grant, likely to be around $500 in year 1, represents $500 of revenue for a specific child that did not previously exist, hence freeing up $500 in the school’s overall budget
2. To offer all schools, regardless of the socio-economic status of their student population, a previously un-existing source of grant revenue for specific projects, equipment or needs other than tuition assistance.
We are happy to answer any questions you might have about the Tuition Assistance Program. These FAQs may cover your question, however if they don’t, please feel free to drop us a line or give us a call.
The Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) is the quantitative system that uses a logarithm created by the Archdiocese of Seattle Fulcrum foundation. TAP puts every child from all the Catholic Schools in one pool and ranks which families’ financial situations most require tuition assistance.
Families fill out the TAP application, which should take about 15 minutes total and can be done via online PDF or printed out and filled in by hand. Families are asked basic personal financial questions based mostly on their most recent tax filing.
TAP also allows for a qualitative component. Families are encouraged to present the story of their extraordinary circumstances that are not reflected in the “math” rankings of TAP. Principals must sign every TAP application from their school acknowledging the accuracy of applications to the best of their knowledge.
WHAT IS THE TIMING OF THE TAP PROCESS?
Please check with your Principal to find out when they need your form submitted. Applications will be for the next academic school year.
WHERE DOES THE MONEY COME FROM TO FUND TAP AND OTHER PROJECTS IN THE SCHOOLS?
Each year, the total amount available to give to school via TAP grants will be determined by:
1. The success of the Celebration of Light Dinner
2. Other Nazareth Guild fundraising done throughout the year
3. Gifts and bequests given to the Nazareth Guild
4. The amount of interest income generated by funds in the Catholic Foundation ear-marked for Catholic Schools. This interest income, effective in 2013, will come from the Catholic Foundation to the Nazareth Guild and be dispersed to the schools by the Nazareth Guild.
WILL THE TAP LOGARITHM AND PROCESS FAVOR SOME SCHOOLS OVER OTHERS?
After each school gets its “minimum” TAP awards, the remaining awards will go to whichever schools have the poorest students. This does mean that a school with an extraordinary number of very poor kids could receive more TAP grants than a school with a smaller number of very poor kids.
WHY NOT JUST DIVIDE ALL THE NAZARETH GUILD MONEY UP IN 16 EQUAL SHARES EACH YEAR?
The purpose of the Nazareth Guild has always been to help Catholic Schools return to their roots of providing quality Catholic education to all families in the community, especially families in need who face so many other challenges of institutionalized poverty. The TAP program will ensure that the poorest students in the Diocese, wherever they are, will get scholarships. This is not meant to unfairly affect schools that don’t have as many poor kids or unfairly help schools that may already have a significant number of poor kids. Instead, the Nazareth Guild hopes to find the poorest kids in the system and help them while still making sure that every school gets something.
The Nazareth Guild is committed to constantly reviewing and discerning our mission and practice. We will encourage Principals to provide us feedback on our distribution policies, procedures and outcomes. Nazareth Guild is a new endeavor. If there are more effective ways to assist Catholic Schools we will examine and discuss them with the schools each year. This model is our starting point. We welcome the possibility of adjustment, growth and learning as we move forward.