Chelsea Public Schools Featured by White House for Successful Child Tax Credit Outreach
On Monday afternoon, September 12, 2022, Superintendent of Chelsea Public Schools (CPS) Dr. Almi G. Abeyta participated as a Guest Speaker on a webinar hosted by the White House. The webinar, Supporting Families During Back to School: The Child Tax Credit & Affordable Connectivity Program, featured CPS as an example of an organization that successfully executed outreach strategies about the Child Tax Credit.
In March of 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) expanded the Child Tax Credit to get more help to more families. ARPA enabled the Child Tax Credit to award families $3,600 for each child under six years old and $3,000 for children ages 6-17. This policy change resulted in additional aid that was pivotal for families nationwide, and for Chelsea families in particular who were facing the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.
With CPS still engaged in remote learning during this ARPA expansion, school leaders needed to shift with how they communicated with families about this opportunity. A digital communication strategy emerged, focusing on text message outreach and equipping the Family Liaisons at each school in Chelsea with the tools needed to inform their families about the benefits of the Child Tax Credit. Thousands of families were reached through this outreach plan.
Since so many families and individuals have a phone, it made sense to rely on texting and messaging campaigns to reach out to families on the child tax credit outreach.— Code for America (@codeforamerica) September 12, 2022
- @almiabeyta, Superintendent of Chelsea Public Schools in Chelsea, MA pic.twitter.com/fit9EeN8Pt
The White House webinar recognized CPS as well as the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services and Meals4Families as examples of school districts, state organizations, and community based organizations who successfully disseminated information about the Child Tax Credit to its audiences. The trio of organizations shared best practices regarding Child Tax Credit outreach. Dr. Abeyta represented CPS on the webinar, detailing what worked in Chelsea to reach CPS families.
White House ARPA Coordinator Gene Sperling, former director of the National Economic Council during the Clinton and Obama administrations, hosted the webinar. It also included information about the Affordable Connectivity Program, which offers eligible households monthly discounts on internet bills and one-time discounts on hardware purchases such as laptops.