Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits, which has corporate offices in Miami and Dallas, announced Wednesday it will contribute $150 million to Florida's Step Up For Students Scholarship Program in 2017-2018, which allows underprivileged children to attend schools in the program’s network, including some private religious schools.
“At Southern Glazer’s, we recognize the importance of a quality education and know that not all families have the same opportunities to provide the best learning environment for their children,” Southern Glazer’s CEO Wayne Chaplin said in a news release. “We are honored to provide thousands of deserving Florida children with scholarships through our relationship with Step Up For Students.”
Chaplin announced the donation at Florida International University’s Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management. On hand for the announcement: Monsignor Edward Pace High School students, 376 of whom are benefitting this year from the scholarship program at the Miami Gardens Catholic school.
The scholarship program, which provided nearly 100,000 scholarships statewide in the 2016-2017 school year, is a nonprofit organization that manages the income-based Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program. Through donations, the organization grants scholarships up to $5,886 to students who qualify for the national free or reduced-price lunch program, or those who are homeless or in foster or out-of-home care.
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The wine and spirits company has contributed to the scholarship program for eight years. The $150 million will provide about 21,000 students with scholarships. In Miami-Dade, there are 420 schools that participate in the program and more than 25,000 students receive scholarships.