State Rep. Brian S. Dempsey, chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means.
Consentino School has been selected to participate in a new pilot program, putting money into college savings accounts for low-income middle school students and families in select Massachusetts Gateway Cities, said state Rep. Brian S. Dempsey, chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means.
SoarMA is a two-year pilot program offering seventh grade students seed-funded savings accounts. Enrolled Consentino School seventh graders are eligible to participate starting during the 2017-2018 school year.
“I am thrilled that Haverhill has been chosen to participate in the SoarMA program. This initiative is an outstanding opportunity for families in Haverhill to begin preparing for their children’s future,” Dempsey said. “529 savings programs are great tool to help parents and their children to start saving and planning for the costs of college.”
The initiative, funded through public-private partnerships, provide a matched savings program and offers a financial education curriculum. SoarMA aims to increase the percentage of families saving for higher education while also boosting post-secondary enrollment and graduation rates for the participating cities. The two-year initiative includes the cities of Haverhill, Lowell, Pittsfield, Springfield and Worcester
These 529 college savings accounts will be offered through the Office of the Massachusetts State Treasurer and Receiver General, in collaboration with the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority (MEFA) and Inversant. Inversant is a Boston-based non-profit organization that will support SoarMA with its existing curriculum model. Inversant’s mission is to utilize parental engagement to ensure that every low-to-moderate income family has the resources and understanding they need to achieve their goals for higher education.
“Access to an affordable higher education provides a pathway to economic stability for many children and families,” said state Treasurer Deb Goldberg. “I am excited to join the effort of these five gateway cities to help ensure Massachusetts’ next generation of leaders has a bright future.”