In 2009, the Illinois General Assembly created a bipartisan task force to explore a Children’s Savings Account (CSA) program in the state. The task force recommended that a savings account should be opened automatically at birth for every child born in Illinois, using the Bright Start Direct College Savings Program as the savings vehicle. This report examines what it will take to make these recommendations a reality. This report looks at how Illinoisans are currently using the Bright Start Program, and will explore the challenges low-income families and families of color face in using Bright Start to save for college. This report also examines how a CSA program could impact the racial wealth gap in Illinois. Finally, the authors make policy recommendations for the design and implementation of a CSA program to help Illinois families save for higher education. (Author abstract modified).
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Building Brighter Futures: Children's Savings Accounts in Illinois.