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For Parents

Montana Single SFO found UNCONSTITUTIONAL

Why … only one SFO for donors to select from … just like (not so) Exceptional SC?

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We have been saying this for years … (not so) Exceptional SC has an UNCONSTITUTIONAL problem … and it is A BIG ONE and DONORS, especially corporate donors, know it!!! 

Why else do you think the “special interest” are trying to push through a 100% GOVERNMENT CONTROLLED Education Savings Account bill (ESA)? 

As soon as the SC program, which is technically MUCH WORSE / RISKIER than the one in Montana is found UNCONSTITUTIONAL as well … the SC Program will have to go back to INDEPENDENT NON-PROFITS and the monied “special interest” and government bureaucrats lose all their control and $$$$.  #FollowTheMoney!!!

US SUPREME COURT PROTECTION:  As we have reported in the past, one of the greatest LEGAL protections we have for these programs is the US Supreme Court ruling in Arizona Christian School Tuition Org. v. Winn, 563 U.S. 125, 131 S. Ct. 1436 (2011).  That case basically says that if you have MULTIPLE INDEPENDENT NON-PROFITS … then they CAN NOT BE SUED over these unconstitutional claims.  This case protects ALL the K-12 Tax Credit Scholarship programs and has been used to defeat legal challenges all over the country.  It is GREAT and it is one reason why K-12 Tax Credit Programs are the GRANDDADDY of school choice!!!

But this US Supreme Court protection is WORTHLESS to us when you have #1 only one SFO (like in Montana) and #2 the Government runs the one SFO (like in South Carolina).  Here is what the Montana Supreme Court said:

(For the Courts full opinion, click HERE.) Espinoza v. Mont. Dep’t of Revenue, 2018 MT 306 (Mont., 2018)

MONTANA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE CAUSE THIS:  And yes, just like here in SC, guess who caused this problem in Montana … their DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE.  We have been telling everyone for years, and senior legislators have confirmed this to us, that the SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE is “POLITICALLY” opposed to school choice generally and this program specifically.  Montana is just another example.

IT IS CLEAR … legally & administratively … (no so) Exceptional SC is a failure:  

Friends & School Officials, this is only going to get MUCH WORSE.  S 131 / H 3202 will END all this mess!!!  Focus on students .. not “special interest”.

For Parents

(not so) Exceptional SC Board Approves 10% Checks

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At this point we do not know what or who to trust … The week before last we were told that 2nd semester scholarships were sent out to schools … last week we were told that just last Tuesday “the Board Of Directors Voted Unanimously to disburse 10% of the spring checks to each school…”, so which one is it? Were the checks sent out two weeks ago? Or approved last week?

Oh … and this … if you do some simple math, in order to cover all current scholarship recipients at ONLY 10% of each spring semester grant, you would still around $600,000 … So … how are they going to “dispense the money evenly across the schools” with less than $350,000 available??? Or were they able to raise additional $300,000 during the COVID-19 shutdown???

I personally reached out for comment to the head of the South Carolina Independent School Association (SCISA) … the organization representing the vast majority of schools in the program …. and also a board member for Exceptional SC. I asked “HOW” Exceptional SC was going to be able to FUND the 10% scholarships (approximately $550,000 +/-) if it does not appear they have CASH IN THE BANK??? I did say that I will be reporting to all our parents that I did not believe that there was enough funds for everyone to get already very limited check …   No response …

Dr. Jordan hired Chad … he represents most of the schools in the program … why no response?  This is not complicated.  Do you have the money … or are you “HOPING” to raise it in time???  Are we asking something unfair??? Here is Dr. Jordan’s contact info – I think you deserve to know!

Dr. Spencer Jordan
Executive Director
SC Association of Independent Schools
https://www.scisa.org/
803-535-4820 (office)
administration@scisa.org
sjordan@scisa.org

Be warned! Our guess is it will take a WHIIIILE to issue those 10% spring scholarship checks … although one thing (not so) Exceptional SC probably forgot about … once approved (on MARCH 24, 2020) … they HAVE TO within 30 DAYS issue the checks.  That’s the law!!! 

We will be watching … so stay tuned!!!

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For Parents

#FireChadConnelly Lies Confirmed: Only $347,382.41 Raised

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Here it is … another lie by #FireChadConnelly. When will it stop??? When will (not so) Exceptional SC’s Board act? When will they take our families with children with special needs seriously and do their job?!?

Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request was sent to the Department of Revenue when we read that Chad Connelly told The State Newspaper that Exceptional SC had raised “about $2 million”.  We did not believe it!!!

SC DOR released the fundraising as of February 29th, 2020 … and it is HORRIBLE!!!  $347,382.41.

Remember, Georgia raised $81.8 MILLION in the first 7 days of 2020 … and #FireChadConnelly can only raise $347K in TWO MONTHS!!!

To read the “Fake News” article click HERE or picture above.

But, you are probably asking … didn’t The State Newspaper “fact check” the $2 MILLION fundraising number #FireChadConnelly told them???

Well … that is a big NO!!!  

We have asked The State Newspaper to fact check it … they were too busy with Covid … so we have now sent them the info from the SC Department of Revenue … and they are still too busy.

Still don’t believe in #FakeNews???  They know the truth … will they follow-up???  Stay tuned … 

Also we are told the three (3) Exceptional SC lawyers were contacted for comment.  Remember, Chad Connelly told THE COURT in a SWORN AFFIDAVIT dated March 4th, 2020, that Exceptional SC had raised $1,045,000 in the prior 21 days (2/11/2020 – 3/3/2020) … and that they were raising approximately $50,000 per day!!!

No response from the lawyers either.  It will be interesting what the Judge says when he is told #FireChadConnelly lied to him in a SWORN AFFIDAVIT. 

ANY PARENT / LAWYERS OUT THERE … WHAT DO YOU THINK THE COURT WILL SAY ABOUT THIS???  LET US KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS!!!  info@palmettokidsFIRST.org, 843-501-1842 (office), 843-901-8035 (Olga’s cell).

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For Parents

“Compulsive Liar” Chad Connelly … Caught On A Lie AGAIN???

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(To read the full article click HERE)

Two weeks ago Chad Connelly claimed in a sworn affidavit that he had raised $1.045 MILLION in donations (over prior 21 days) … beginning of last week #FireChadConnelly told reporters it was $2 MILLION … and then followed up with email to parents stating that “Just this week, we issued our initial second semester CHECKS to schools and will continue to do so as funds are available.”

In our email last Saturday we pointed out that we believed it was another lie … that there was no indication (not so) Exceptional SC raised anything close to $2 MILLION … thus we did not believe that “second semester checks were issued”. Heck, we took an extra step asking parents to let us know whether they received the 2nd semester funding. The POLL RESULTS were pretty predictable: 65.4% of parents / families have not received a 2nd semester scholarship check, 34.6% “have not heard” and we did not have one person/family that confirmed receiving a 2nd semester scholarship check.

Yesterday, March 25, 2020, #FireChadConnelly & Board Chairman Tom Persons sent another email stating: “(…) Our Board Of Directors Voted Unanimously to disburse 10% of the spring checks to each school…”

Yes … you are reading it right – 10% of the spring checks!!! So let’s say, you have been getting a $10,000 scholarship for the last 5 years … this current school year, you received first semester scholarship check for $5,00 in the fall … you will be receiving $500 for the second semester this spring!!!

Well, what happened to the checks that “were sent to schools last week”??? Were they only $500 checks …? Or as we pointed out, there were NO checks sent out …? What happened to the $2 MILLION that (not so) Exceptional SC supposedly raised since January??? Or as we pointed out there was no $2 MILLION raised??? If Exceptional SC in fact raised $2 MILLION that should cover 33% of everyone’s spring semester check … not 10% … we believe that the $2 MILLION was ANOTHER lie … and there wasn’t more than few hundred thousands raised so far …

Our hearts are simply heartbroken for you – our families and schools!!! During these extraordinarily difficult times we would want for your to have one less thing to worry about … One less uncertainty to deal with … yet another burden of your school tuition was just added to your plate. Just so you know, we are working 24/7 here to help you! We are working with legislators to fix this mess and still get you help for this current school year … and DEFINITELY moving forward. It is critically important that you let your legislators know (click HERE to look them up) about this complete failure coming with 10% announcement. This is simply UNACCEPTABLE and not how these programs work!!!

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