Private school for low-income students raising money for students

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News 12 This Morning/Tuesday January 7, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW)--"He is a big math and science geek. And that's a good term, as far as I'm concerned," said Melanie Stark.

Stark, mother of three, is talking about her oldest son Drew who's in 6th grade at private Christian school Heritage Academy.

"He actually originally went to public school for his kindergarten and 1st grade and he was having a lot of attention problems," she explained.

So they made the switch to Heritage, a school for students who normally wouldn't be able to afford a private school education.

"Now, he's at a point where he is doing A's and B's," said Stark. "He is such a good student and it's because there was a big team effort."

"We are a donor based school," explained Linda Tucciarone, the Academy's executive director. "Donor's make up the difference between the tuition a parent pays based on their income and what it actually costs to provide an education here."

"We would never be able to pay for a regular private school. And so, the community is essential," said Stark.

Tucciarone says they've got 40 percent more to raise for all 190 enrolled students to finish the school year.

One way they take donations is through a tax credit scholarship, where folks can have a portion of their taxes redirected to scholarships for low-income students.

"It's one of the main ways we've been able to grow," Tucciarone explained. "We're up to 190 students. Next year we're anticipating 210 or 220."

For Stark, she says she and her son are anticipating a brighter future thanks to the community support.

"This is the foundation for him and we've made a great foundation," said Stark.

Aside from tax-credit scholarships, there are several ways to give including direct donation.

If you're interested, click the link below for contact information at Heritage Academy.

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