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Children's Scholarship Fund Launches Application Season For Low-Income Families

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Applications are now open for a program aimed at helping low-income families in Philadelphia get a jump on paying for tuition-based schools.

There were so many applicants in Memorial Hall it was too crowded to have the children hop on the historic Carousel. Children's Scholarship Fund Philadelphia is offering 2,000 need-based K-8TH grade four-year scholarships.

(Credit: Steve Tawa)

Angel Arroyo of Kensington works hard every day, trying to make ends meet to send his 3rd grade boy to St. Peter the Apostle School on North Fifth Street in Northern Liberties.

"Yes sir. I pay tuition every month," Arroyo said.

Like the others, he's applying through a random lottery.

"It helps the parents with a lot of stress, you know, with the economy. It's a big help to all of us."

Children's Scholarship Fund Executive Director Ina Lipman says by mid-November, they'll select those scholarships to 160 private and parochial schools.

"Your odds are better than the state lottery, by a whole lot."

Another parent, Lateefah Lucky, shared her experience with the audience, and how her young daughter, a third grader, attends St. Dominic's School on Frankford Ave.

"My goal for Jordan is for her to be better and go further than I."

A typical family gets around $2,000 in scholarship money, with up to three children per family qualifying. The privately-funded non-profit receives corporate and foundation donations. In return, businesses get state tax credits.

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