Businesses get credit, students reap benefits
Our Lady of the Most Blessed Sacrament School in Harrison and St. Irenaeus School in Oakmont will split $10,000 for scholarships for underprivileged students.
The donation, which was made by UnitedHealthcare through the Bridge Educational Foundation, was announced Thursday afternoon in Blessed Sacrament's kindergarten room.
The Bridge Educational Foundation is a nonprofit group that helps local schools secure scholarship money from the state Educational Improvement Tax Credit Program, or EITC, and direct it toward low-income families wishing to send their children to private school.
EITC offers businesses the ability to earn tax credits for making donations to schools or educational improvement groups.
Students in Heidi Culleiton's kindergarten class were presented with a ceremonial check and listened as state Rep. Frank Dermody and UnitedHealthcare Vice President of Network Strategy Michael Fantoni read them stories.
“The EITC money allows students to come to Blessed Sacrament that might not be able to afford it,” said Sean Davis, Blessed Sacrament principal. “All the money we get goes directly to students.
“It allows us to offer more children the opportunity to come here.”
The average tuition for students attending parochial schools in the Diocese of Pittsburgh is $3,450, according to the diocese.
Dermody, D-Oakmont, reiterated Davis' words to the students before he read to them.
“This check means other kids will have the opportunity to go to Blessed Sacrament,” Dermody said, perched in a tiny classroom chair intended for a kindergartner.
UnitedHealthcare's Fantoni said the Bridge Educational Foundation's goals line up with his company's goals.
“The monies we can afford to them complements our mission,” Fantoni said. “We believe that well-educated kids grow up to be successful, healthy adults.”
Joe Gerdes, a founder of the Bridge Educational Foundation, made sure the students knew how lucky they were to be able to attend Blessed Sacrament.
“Your parents are paying money for you to go to school here,” Gerdes told the youngsters. “That's what we call a sacrifice.
“You should thank them for making the sacrifice to send you here.”
R.A. Monti is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Meals delivery on holiday helps to remember Penn Hills boy who drowned
- Flurry of business activity enlivening quaint Saxonburg
- New Kensington homicide suspect faces trial on tampering charge
- DUI checkpoints take on dangerous drivers
- Salvation Army taking iconic red kettles online
- Apollo-Ridge Education Foundation donates $12,000 to revamping middle school library
- Machinists ranked No. 1 occupation by Department of Labor
- Brackenridge high-rise infested with bed bugs
- Allegheny Twp. residents challenge legality of drilling in neighborhoods
- Upper Burrell man accused of selling Suboxone
- Positives seen despite Valley Junior-Senior High School performance scores