Illinois Tax Credit Scholarship Program

Already reserved your tax credit through MyTax Illinois? Click HERE to make your contribution online, or mail with your Contribution Authorization Certification to Big Shoulders Fund (212 W. Van Buren St., Suite 900, Chicago, IL, 60607).

ANNOUNCEMENT: Thank you to all the families who submitted applications to the Tax Credit Scholarship Program. Big Shoulders Fund received more than 12,000 applications, reflecting tremendous demand and need for educational opportunity.

As the number of applications increased, it was apparent that the demand outweighed our current ability to award Tax Credit Scholarships; therefore, we proactively chose to suspend our application at 11:59pm on January 23, 2018. We communicated the decision to suspend our application in advance via our website, email, and social media channels to give families as much notice as possible.

As required by the Illinois Invest In Kids Act, we will notify everyone in Priority Group 1 within 10 business days after the receipt of application. All applicants in Priority Group 1 will receive an email response no later than Monday, February 5, 2018. Applicants in Priority Group 2 will be notified at a later date.  Additional information is provided at

The new Illinois Tax Credit Scholarship Program provides donors a unique opportunity to contribute to scholarships that help lower-income families send their children to private schools — while reducing their own tax bill on dollars otherwise owed to the state.

The program enables individuals and corporations to reserve Illinois income tax credits based on contributions made to Scholarship Granting Organizations, or SGOs. The organizations then provide scholarships for eligible students to attend nonpublic schools, with priority given to low-income students. Taxpayers may apply 75 percent of the total contributed as a tax credit against their Illinois income tax bill. For example, a taxpayer making a $1,000 qualified contribution would be awarded a $750 tax credit. The credits are capped at $1 million per taxpayer per year.

Big Shoulders Fund has been approved by the Illinois Department of Revenue to participate as an SGO for this new tax credit program.

For more information about how to reserve your tax credit and contribute to the Big Shoulders Fund SGO, please review the following documents or contact us at or 312.751.8337.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Steps to Reserve a Tax Credit