How to Apply

Families interested in sending their child to one of our schools can apply for one of our many scholarship programs. We now have two different types of scholarship programs.

The first is our traditional, privately funded group of programs which we have been providing to families for many years. There are a wide variety of scholarships available with differing requirements. You can only apply for these scholarships through a school. Please contact the principal of your local Big Shoulders Fund school to discuss your scholarship eligibility and the application process for these programs.

student St. Margaret of Scotland

Beginning in 2018, we are excited to announce that Big Shoulders Fund will add a new type of scholarship program. We have been approved to operate as a Scholarship Granting Organization (SGO) under the recently passed Illinois Invest in Kids Act. An SGO is a tax-exempt charity approved by the Illinois Department of Revenue to administer scholarship dollars donated specifically for this program. Donors receive a tax credit for their contribution, rather than a charitable tax deduction. This new Tax Credit Scholarship Program provides an additional source of funding for scholarships that can benefit eligible students enrolled in, or applying to, qualified non-public schools, including the schools traditionally supported by the Big Shoulders Fund. Families apply directly to SGOs to obtain a tax credit scholarship. Scholarships are determined solely based on eligibility and family income as defined by the Invest in Kids Act. Payments are made to the scholarship recipients’ schools on their behalf. Please visit for more information about eligibility requirements and the application process.