Kickstart to Career Newaygo County will benefit kindergartners enrolling fall 2018 through 2027. Eligible students must reside in the Newaygo County Regional Educational Service Agency (NCRESA) school district or a township immediately adjacent to it. Students must also attend kindergarten in the NCRESA school district, including public, private, or parochial schools. Homeschooled students residing in the NCRESA school district or a township immediately adjacent to it are also eligible. Please note that homeschooled children may not be automatically enrolled in the program. Contact Fremont Area Community Foundation at 231.924.5350 for verification of enrollment.

Each year, parents will be notified of incentive opportunities children can earn. The incentives will be determined by a "champion committee" comprised of educators, ChoiceOne Bank, and Fremont Area Community Foundation.

If a student moves within the NCRESA school district, the child is still considered a participant in the program and can continue to receive deposits and request withdrawals for qualifying education needs upon graduation. If moving outside the NCRESA service area, the child will still have access to the account but will not be eligible for reward deposits and incentives.

Accounts are started automatically for all kindergarten students unless parents call the Community Foundation at 231.924.5350 to opt out.



Each kindergarten student in Newaygo County has the opportunity to be the beneficiary of an account at ChoiceOne Bank, opened with a $50 deposit from Fremont Area Community Foundation.

Students will have opportunities to earn an additional $50 each year (grades 1-12) through incentives as determined by the champion committee. Families and friends can also make deposits at any time.

A parent or guardian can be added to the account as an account contact. This will allow them to ask about an account's activity and balance. Families can update their address with Fremont Area Community Foundation.



Accounts are deposit-only, which means the funds remain on deposit until Fremont Area Community Foundation approves a withdrawal for future education and career-related expenses.

Accounts are owned by Fremont Area Community Foundation, but the funds are held in trust for the student and available for withdrawal upon graduation from high school. Withdrawals must be a qualified withdrawal and approved by the Community Foundation.

Initial deposits and funds earned from incentives will be directly deposited into the student's account by Fremont Area Community Foundation. Additional private deposits can be made at any ChoiceOne Bank in person or by mail by referencing the student's name, school, and birthdate. Reoccurring deposits can also be set up at any ChoiceOne Bank.

Accounts earn interest. Interest will be compounded each calendar quarter and will be credited accordingly.


Accounts are not subject to balance or transaction fees.



Students enrolling in kindergarten in fall 2018-2027 are automatically enrolled. Student information--including student name, address, and student ID number--will be shared with Fremont Area Community Foundation and ChoiceOne Bank. Student completion of incentives, to be developed by the champion committee, will also be shared. Shared data will never include things like individual grades or test scores. No information will be shared outside of program partners.

Social security numbers are not needed because Fremont Area Community Foundation is the owner of the accounts. The student's school ID number is all that is needed and will be provided by the school district.



Fremont Area Community Foundation

ChoiceOne Bank

Big Jackson Public Schools

Fremont Christian School

Fremont Public Schools

Grant Christian Schools

Grant Public Schools

Hesperia Community Schools

Newaygo County Regional Educational Service Agency

Newaygo Public Schools

White Cloud Public Schools


Champion Committee

Kickstart to Career has a champion committee consisting of one school representative for every participating district. The role of the champion is to be an advocate for the program and the main contact for parents, students, and teachers in their respective school.

Rebecca Jackson, Big Jackson Public Schools

Denise Alleman, Fremont Christian School

Rachael Schwartz, Fremont Public Schools

Holly Patenge, Grant Christian School

Amy Zerlaut, Grant Public Schools

Wendy Tozer, Hesperia Community Schools

Jen Thomasma, Newaygo Public Schools

Lorie Watson, White Cloud Public Schools




Community Economic Development Association of Michigan

University of Michigan