Space Coast Credit Union - www.sccu.com - 321-752-2222
As School Budgets Shrink, SCCU Expands Education Support Program
Education budget woes are affecting students, teachers, and communities in Florida- and things are expected to get worse. Volusia County public schools have recently cut three sports and two academic fairs. In Brevard County, a multitude of teachers have reported many of their basic supplies for the school year had been used up weeks before Christmas break.
Even before the current crunch began, Florida’s teachers typically spent $400 - $600 of their own money annually to purchase teaching materials and classroom supplies, with first year teachers often spending over $1,000.
Many are wondering where the Florida State Lottery comes in. Although the lottery contributes to Bright Futures Scholarships and helps build schools through capital improvement programs, revenues are not directed toward day-to-day or per-student expenses, so lottery funds don’t help when those basic supplies run out.
Help for those basic classroom costs is available from a unique program offered by Space Coast Credit Union – and a recent expansion of the program couldn’t have come at a better time.
The credit union’s Education Donation Program allows SCCU members to donate a portion of the rewards points they earn on their SCCU’s Platinum Visa Credit cards to support education.
The Education Donation Program also reflects the credit union’s cooperative structure. Stated Doug Samuels, SCCU’s President, “This program isn’t about a large corporate donation. This is about allowing our 155,000 members to pool modest individual donations together in order to make a difference in the community. It’s also important to keep in mind that the credit union doesn’t decide where the money goes – each member makes that choice. All SCCU does is facilitate the donation.”
Here is how the program works: Members fill out a simple form, either online or at a branch, to register a card by providing the 16-digit card number and selecting a percentage of points to donate. The credit union deducts the donated points from the total earned each month, converts the points to a cash equivalent, and maintains a non-interest bearing account for each recipient. Donations can be cancelled or changed at any time, allowing members to donate to different teachers and organizations as their child proceeds through school.
Recipients get a statement delivered to their school each month showing the amount available to redeem. To receive the available funds, recipients bring the statement to one of SCCU’s 32 branches and present their school ID. “We know that teachers can’t readily get out of the classroom during the workday, so we can process redemptions at our drive-thrus, which are open for more hours than the branches, and by mail,” stated Farnsworth.
Donations can be directed to recipients at public and private schools, and to home school groups.
Does the program really help in the classroom? Yes, according to Lynn Clifton, Director of the Brevard Schools Foundation. The Foundation partnered with SCCU starting in 2008 to help raise awareness of the program among teachers. “Teachers spend their own money for many things that keep the classroom going, and this program helps compensate them for those expenses. People don’t realize that teachers often purchase items like binders, paper, pens, and pencils for students whose family is unable to provide them. This program can also help with field trip expenses, supplies for group projects, and similar efforts that would have to be paid for by the teacher or the parents because they aren’t in the budget.”
Clubs and teams can also benefit from the program. Parent-Teacher Organizations (PTOs) are popular recipients among SCCU members who have registered cards in the program.
Those interested in joining Space Coast Credit Union or in obtaining a credit card can call the credit union’s main number, 321-752-2222.
About Space Coast Credit Union
Space Coast Credit Union is headquartered in Melbourne, Florida with a regional headquarters in Daytona Beach. SCCU serves over 160,000 members with assets of over $1.6 billion through a network of branches and ATMs located from Vero Beach to Palm Coast, and through its web site, SCCU.com. Space Coast Credit Union is open for membership to anyone who lives or works in Brevard, Volusia, Flagler, Indian River, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, or St. Lucie counties.
Copyright © 2009 Space Coast Credit Union.
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Copyright © 2013 Space Coast Credit Union.