LOU Early Learning Collaborative announces Pre-K tax credit

Published 8:00 am Saturday, December 14, 2019

For the first time in the Oxford and Lafayette County area, the LOU Early Childhood Learning Collaborative can accept donations from individuals or corporations and be eligible to receive a state tax credit.

The tax credit is a 1:1 credit for the donated amount up to $1 million, and donations can come from what a taxpayer will owe in state taxes for 2019. The tax payment can be sent directly to benefit local Pre-K programs in both the Oxford and Lafayette County school districts.

The LOU ELC supports high-quality early childhood education programs, which are offered at Bramlett Elementary, Lafayette Lower Elementary, Willie Price Lab School and Mary Cathey Head Start.

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“The great thing about the 1:1 Pre-K tax credit is the donor is not giving extra money to a cause,” said LOU ELC coordinator Tamara Hillmer. “They are simply giving what they would normally pay to the general fund of the state; however, the money stays local to support Pre-K education.”

State funds only cover a minimal amount of what it costs to implement the collaborative to help pay for salaries, materials and resources for children enrolled in the programs. Pre-kindergarten services for four-year-olds cost $4,300 per child enrolled in a full-day program and $2,150 per child enrolled in a half-day program. Mississippi provides half of these costs, and the remainder of the funds must be made up by the school districts and providers of the program.

To donate to the L.O.U. Early Learning Collaborative and receive the tax credit, contact Hillmer at tlhillmer@oxfordsd.org or 662-380-5448. Visit loureads.org for more information and donations from the 2019 tax year must be reported to the LOU Collaborative no later than Dec. 31.