Mid-Bay Rotary Club Supports TSIC Scholarship Program

The Mid-Bay Rotary Club recently made a generous donation to the Take Stock in Children Scholarship Program of the Okaloosa Public Schools Foundation.  Over the past several years, Mid-Bay Rotary has funded seven college scholarships for Take Stock Scholars in Okaloosa County.  In addition to their financial contributions, club members have served as mentors to Take Stock Scholars, providing caring guidance to students in the program.

The Take Stock in Children (TSIC) Scholarship Program is one of the primary focuses of the Okaloosa Public Schools Foundation.  Take Stock is a unique and innovative program that provides two-year and four-year scholarships to deserving low-income youth who may not go on to college because of their families' financial situation. Eighth grade students with good grades, good attendance, and good discipline records who meet the income eligibility requirement are invited to apply for these scholarships. Each student who is selected by the Executive Committee of the Foundation signs a contract, along with his or her parent, promising to maintain a good school record, to remain drug and crime free and to meet weekly with a mentor.  Students who maintain the terms of their contracts are awarded tuition scholarships to the post-secondary institutions of their choice.

In the 2014-2015 school year, Take Stock in Children will serve 70 students throughout the district, representing every high school in Okaloosa County.  Funding for the Take Stock in Children Program comes to the Foundation from several sources.  Scholarship funds are generated from private and corporate donations to the Foundation and are matched, dollar for dollar, from the Florida Prepaid College Foundation through a Florida Legislative allocation.  Workforce Florida also supports the Take Stock in Children Program by funding scholarships.  The State Take Stock in Children office provides an allocation to the Okaloosa Public Schools Foundation for program and student support staffing.   

Program support is provided for both Take Stock Scholars and their mentors to assure that our Scholars have the tools to assist them in attaining their educational and career goals.  Most of the Take Stock students will be the first in their families to attend college and face many challenges on their journey.  Grants, as well as corporate and individual donations, provide funds for program support.  As an agency of the United Way, the Take Stock Program is the recipient of contributions that are designated for our program.  Through a matching grant program of the Consortium of Florida Education Foundations, funding for program support is matched, dollar-for –dollar. Program support funding is utilized for services such as tutoring, ACT/SAT preparation and Financial Aid Workshops.  Both students and mentors are also provided with materials and activities with a focus on the transition from high school to college.  For stories and information about our donors and contributors, please see Community Donors.

For more information about the Take Stock in Children program contact Cindy Frazier, the OCSD's Take Stock in Children Program Coordinator.  For information about Take Stock at the state level, click here.

Okaloosa Public Schools Foundation

The Okaloosa Public Schools Foundation, Inc. (OPSF) is a not-for-profit community-based public schools foundation. It is a partnership between families, schools, community and business. The Foundation is dedicated to supporting and extending the educational opportunities of all individuals within Okaloosa County. Since its establishment in 1995, OPSF has funded educational enrichment programs including teacher grants for unique programs, student scholars in the Take Stock in Children Program, community educational initiatives, and student and teacher recognition awards. For more information on OPSF, click here.

Pictured above, left to right: Superintendent of Schools Mary Beth Jackson; Mid-Bay Rotary Club President Jeffrey Rink; and, Take Stock in Children Program Coordinator Cindy Frazier.