Dr. Lewis M. Andrews, founder of CEO and current President of the Board, was greatly inspired by an article in Forbes magazine about a new foundation offering access to private elementary schools to children who might not otherwise have the finances to attend an accredited private school of their choice. A strong advocate of education reform, Dr. Andrews contacted the foundation to learn more. After hearing what was being done, he connected with a start-up group of like-minded people in Bridgeport, Connecticut to form the Children's Educational Opportunity Foundation of Connecticut, Inc.
CEO officially launched in August 1995 in Bridgeport, Connecticut, awarding $1,000 scholarships to 100 qualified students. $100,000 was an impressive beginning to the foundation’s future mission.
CEO expanded to Hartford in 1998. The number of CEO scholars grew to 200 students thanks to an anonymous donor who indicated when CEO gained it’s official non profit status, this person would commit $1 million to support the work of CEO in Hartford. CEO received 501(c)(3) status in December of 1997.
CEO welcomed scholars from New Haven in 1999. The program grew to 300 students with the average scholarship of $1,000 per academic year.
The annual academic scholarship increased to $2,100 per student, or up to half the annual tuition.
Thanks to the support of an anonymous donor, CEO expanded to include East Hartford.
CEO announces that effective March 1, 2021 the foundation will accept applications from residents of Waterbury CT. Within a month of the announcement, 79 Waterbury children were awarded scholarships.
CEO currently serves almost 400 scholars per year at over 40 private and parochial accredited schools in Connecticut.