Tuesday, May 28, 2019


In this update:

  • Applications for 2019-2020
  • Big Questions
  • Our Funding Formula

First Round of Applications 

In the first round of the application process, we received more than 2,700 student applicants for the 2019-2020 school year! This is our largest group of applicants ever, and we continue to grow as people learn about the success and impact we’re making in the lives of these students.

According to the SC Department of Education, there are nearly 90,000 exceptional needs students across South Carolina, so we anticipate continued growth year by year.

Applications Reopen in June

During the month of May, TADS has been reviewing filed applications. If you haven’t finalized your student's documentation/application, you will have the entire month of June to complete that process. 


Big Questions...

The most frequently asked questions we hear from folks are:

“How much will my scholarship be for this year?”
Will we get the same scholarship amount we received last year?” 

These are great questionsand we certainly understand their timeliness as you prepare for this upcoming school year. We obviously want to get you as much scholarship money as we possibly can, and we work EVERY day to grow and improve Exceptional SC.

Lately though, we have heard that some groups that claim to be scholarship organizations are creating confusion for you with purposefully misleading information. 

Just so you know, a recent court decision made it very clear that Exceptional SC, as South Carolinas only scholarship funding organization, is and will continue to be a non-profit organization, not a government program. 

With that said, heres what we can say with absolute certainty:


  • Scholarships are funded by donations from people across South Carolina when they redirect their state tax dollars to Exceptional SC.
  • Scholarship amounts will always be dependent on the number of applicants and and the money available each year.
  • Our commitment is to fund incumbents first and treat all the students the same as they enter the program. 
  • While we are pushing for an increased cap in the funds we can raise, the SC Senate has held off on making a decision on the amount of that increase until next year’s legislative session.


  • Federal tax laws have changed, and many CPAs are trying to determine how those changes could affect their clients who donate to our program


  • Our stated goal is to provide up to 50% of tuition to each incumbent student and then fund new applicants with the remaining available funds. 
  • As a parental choice program, the funds we provide follow your student to the school that you choose.
  • Scholarships are based on the actual tuition of the school you choose for your student to attend.

Here are two examples of how this works



If your child is an incumbent and you choose a school that costs $10,000 per year, the maximum scholarship you could receive would be $5000.



If you choose to move your child from a school that costs $20,000 per year to a school that charges only $10,000 per year, your maximum scholarship would be $5000.


We sincerely hope this clears up any confusion. 

Please note that we plan to notify you of Fall 2019 awards by mid summer so you can make any decisions regarding your student's education. 


South Carolina’s ONLY Exceptional Needs Scholarship Funding Organization

While you might continue to hear from lingering scholarship organizations that put out disinformation about Exceptional SC, these organizations cannot accept tax dollar donations for this program, cannot process applications for your children, and cannot distribute money for scholarships. 

As South Carolina’s ONLY exceptional needs scholarship program, Exceptional SC is your sole sources for scholarship forms and the most accurate information on exceptional needs scholarships for your student.


Important Contact Information to Remember

As always please do not hesitate to contact the following with any specific questions or concern:


Application or Donation Questions


Technical Application Questions (TADS)


Tax Credit Questions (SCDOR)


Chad Connelly
Executive Director


Tom Persons
Chairman of the Board

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