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Local

Applications for private school scholarship program on hold

Matthew Apgar - mapgar@shawmedia.com
St. Mary's Catholic School principal Jan Benson gives students their instructions for the annual spelling bee during Catholic School Week on Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018 at St.Mary's Catholic School in Sycamore.
Matthew Apgar - mapgar@shawmedia.com St. Mary's Catholic School principal Jan Benson gives students their instructions for the annual spelling bee during Catholic School Week on Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018 at St.Mary's Catholic School in Sycamore.

DeKALB – After 24,000 families visited the Empower Illinois website within the first few minutes applications became open for the Tax Credit Scholarship program, the site crashed, and all applications have been indefinitely suspended.

The program, made possible through the Invest in Kids Act, is offering private school scholarships that could cover 50 percent to 100 percent of the average cost to educate a student, or about $13,000.

A Facebook post from Empower Illinois said the issue affected everyone, and no applications have been processed. According to the Empower Illinois website, it is unclear when the application portal will relaunch.

“We knew the demand for quality educational options was strong, but no one estimated the overwhelming statewide demand we saw today,” a post on Empower Illinois’ website reads. “Parents get one chance at a quality education, and thousands took every opportunity to make sure their kids were first in line.”

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