With the School District of Philadelphia looking to close yet another yawning budget deficit, parents have begun to take matters into their own hands in order to preserve the quality of educational programs at their neighborhood schools.
The School District has cut funding for programs considered non-essential such as studio arts, performing arts and foreign languages. One group of Center City parents has taken advantage of a state tax credit program to keep art alive at their school.
That school is Albert M. Greenfield Elementary, near Fitler Square. The school’s active Home and School Association has raised private funds to paint, landscape, and improve the school’s interior and exterior spaces, so it didn’t take much to get it involved in the business of saving cherished enrichment programs.
The HSA took advantage of a state tax credit known as the Education Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) to do this. By establishing itself as an Educational Improvement Organization (EIO), the Greenfield HSA can receive direct donations from private companies to support programs cut by the School District outside the core curriculum. Companies can deduct the donations from their state tax bills.
The HSA did not clear the bureaucratic hurdles in time to save Greenfield’s art program this year but will be able to do so for the coming school year.
Read more about this development in.