Lakewood residents will be able to apply for a financial grant that will cover educational costs, including private school tuitions, if they meet certain income eligibility requirements and suffered financially from the coronavirus pandemic.
“For the first time ever in the history of the Garden State, there will be real money being allocated to families for educational expenses,” Rabbi Avi Schnall, director of Agudath Israel’s New Jersey office, said in a statement. “We are proud that Agudath Israel will be administering this important grant.”
The grant is sponsored by the Lakewood Township through the federal American Rescue Plan’s financial aid for schools, and will be distributed through the New Jersey office of Agudath Israel while funds last.
The Educational Assistance Program (EAP) will be available for families who pay for private school that fall beneath a certain income threshold and can prove they have been adversely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
Lakewood residents whose 2020 income was lower than $198,000 for a married couple (or $99,000 for an individual), and who whose adjusted gross income in 2020 was lower than in 2019 due to the pandemic would be eligible. The eligibility limit is raised $10,000 for every qualifying dependent student. Grants will be a minimum of $2,500.
Rabbi Schnall told Hamodia the idea originated in the Agudath office, and they approached the municipality with the prospect, and found the township leadership was in favor of the plan.
“We absolutely expect [this model] to be used in other townships,” Rabbi Schnall said.
Lakewood residents can apply directly online or, if they do not have Internet access, through the New Jersey office of Agudath Israel at 930-B East County Line Road in Lakewood NJ, 08701.
Applicants will be asked to fill out information and submit a copy of their 2019 and 2020 tax returns, as well as an outstanding bill for educational expenses.