Giving Back

Make a difference through corporate, budget-favorable tax credit and rebate giving programs.

Louisiana

Under the Louisiana Tuition Donation Rebate Program, any corporate or individual taxpayer that files a Louisiana tax return is eligible to receive a 95% rebate for eligible donations to Arete. There are no limits on the size or number of donations.

Is this for real? A louisiana taxpayer can donate any amount to Arete to support the education of low in- come students and receive a 95% rebate from the state?

That is correct. The Louisiana Tuition Donation Rebate Program allows individuals and corporations to receive rebates for donations to Arete Scholars, a state-approved nonprofit that in turn, provides scholarships to enable low-income students to attend private schools.

Why would the state do this?

For several reasons. First, low-income students who begin attending private schools perform better academically, and graduate from high school at much higher rates than if they had stayed in their assigned schools. Second, the program results in significant savings to the state by limiting each scholarship to 80% of the average state spend per pupil in public school. Currently, scholarships are capped at approximately $4,000 for students in K-8 and $4,500 for grades 9-12. Everybody wins when you can obtain better academic results at a significantly lower cost.

Given private school tuition rates, is a $4,500 scholarship enough for low-income families?

Yes. Nationally, the average tuition for an elementary private school is just $6,700, with many religiously affiliated schools costing less than $5,000 annually. In Louisiana, many schools are deeply commit- ted to both character development and the academic achievement of students from all socio-economic backgrounds. A combination of parental contribution and school financial aid can make up any differences.

Who are your corporate partners?

Our generous partners include companies of all sizes. Some of our larger supporters include Walgreens, Wells Fargo, Dollar General, Equifax, and Waste Management.

Who is eligible to donate to Arete?

Any corporate or individual taxpayer that files a Louisiana tax return is eligible to receive a 95% rebate for donations to Arete. There are no limits on the size or number of donations. 

What is the process for making a donation and receiving a rebate?

Donations may be made at any point during the year. However, rebates are issued by the Louisiana Department of Revenue at the end of the school year, after the Department of Education verifies that scholarships have been awarded and paid by Arete. Donors will receive multiple rebates if their donation funds scholarships in more than one school year.

Does the tuition donation rebate program take money from public schools?

No. The program does not touch the education budget. Additionally, tuition donation rebate scholarships guarantee savings to taxpayers by awarding amounts that are substantially less than the per student expense in public schools. These savings can remain invested in public schools.

Are there any downsides for me or my company getting involved?

It is hard to see any. For a net contribution of just five cents on the dollar, partners can radically alter the lives of disadvantaged children. Through this relatively simple step, individuals and corporations can make a lasting, tangible difference in the lives of low-income families, help break generational cycles of poverty, and give thousands of children a brighter future.

Sample Timeline 

JANUARY 15, 2014

Taxpayer donates $100K to Arete, who then allocates $95K to fund scholarships. Arete retains 5 percent ($5K) to cover program admin- istration costs.

MARCH 1, 2014

Arete processes scholarships for students to attend private schools for the following school year.

SEPTEMBER 1 - MAY 31, 2014

Arete makes quarterly scholarship payments totaling $95K during the 2014-15 school year.

JUNE 1, 2015

The Louisiana Department of Education verifies scholarship payments and issues receipt to taxpayer. The taxpayer completes a Tuition Donation Rebate form and submits both the rebate form and receipt to the Department of Revenue (LDR). The LDR issues a $95K rebate check to the taxpayer. 

Arete Scholars helps give disadvantaged children
a chance by giving their parents a choice.