Jennifer Ellis and Andrea Boring, cohosts of The Bishop’s Hour Podcast, recently sat down with Deb Preach and Colleen McCoy-Cejka of Catholic Education Arizona to discuss the benefits of Catholic education and the impact it has had on each of their lives. Each of the podcast hosts are mothers with children who are either attending Catholic schools themselves, or have graduated from Catholic schools, so they have seen the positive impact firsthand. Some have also been the recipients of tuition assistance thanks to CEA and are so grateful for the organization and how instrumental it was in funding their children’s education.


Benefits of Catholic Education


It’s undeniable that Catholic education makes a difference for the good of society. As Colleen points out, Catholic schools impact the way students see themselves and the world at large in a positive way, getting them to appreciate who God created them to be, and to use the gifts they’ve been given to serve and give back. In fact, the students at the Catholic Schools in the Dioceses of Phoenix spend thousands of hours serving their community, and it’s a national statistic as well that kids who go to Catholic schools end up giving back throughout their lives.


Not only that, but the results are incredible, with a 99% graduation rate and 97% of students from high schools in the Diocese of Phoenix going on to higher education or military service. Additionally, as Andrea Boring points out, it’s important that there is an integration between their faith community, their school, and what they are teaching their children at home. “We’re all speaking the same language”, she says, “We’re working together to form this child, and that has absolutely been our experience with Catholic education”.


The great thing about Arizona is that this amazing Catholic education is available for all families, regardless of their income or geographic area, because of individuals and corporations who contribute their tax credits towards Catholic Education Arizona. There are four tax credits for private education in Arizona, Deb explains; the original individual tax credit, the individual switcher tax credit, and two corporate tax credits which are designed for those meeting the federal poverty guidelines. CEA is involved in all four, which means that anyone who desires a Catholic education for their children can take advantage of that tuition assistance.


There are many tax contribution myths that the team at CEA work hard to educate people on. When Colleen moved to Arizona from out of state, for example, the program seemed too good to be true. How can it cost absolutely nothing to be able to contribute? These misconceptions can keep donors from giving and families from applying, which is why it is so vital to educate individuals, corporations, and families on this important program in the state of Arizona.


Catholic education for students is an investment that comes back tenfold both in the lives of families and society at large, and the team at CEA is always happy walk people through how to redirect their tax credits. There are plenty of educational videos and content at, or you can call (602) 218-6542 with questions.