A donation this week by GEICO to provide scholarship assistance for Arizona students to attend private schools reminds us of the more than $500 million that individuals and corporations have contributed through school tuition organizations since 1998.
While contributions cannot be made targeting specific students, donors may direct which schools receive the money. For example, out of the $8 million GEICO recently donated through the Arizona Leadership Foundation STO, $4 million has been earmarked for Pima County students.
A School Tuition Organization cannot award, restrict, or reserve scholarships solely on the basis of a donor’s recommendation. A taxpayer may not claim a tax credit if the taxpayer agrees to swap donations with another taxpayer to benefit either taxpayer’s own dependent. (A.R.S. 43-1089)