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    Enrollment open for income-based and disability-based applications on Step Up for Students and on AAA Scholarships for income-based applications.

    Florida offers the MOST state scholarships nationwide.

    Learn about our great state
    programs below.
    Income Based
    Income Based
    The Family Empowerment Educational Options & Florida Tax Credit Scholarships (FES-EO/FTC), are for students K-12 from low-mid income households in the amount of approximately $7,000 for nonpublic school tuition and fees.
    FAQS

    Income Eligibility chart

    Account Set Up


    Application process

    new Income Chart

    Disability Based
    disability Based
    The Family Empowerment Unique Abilities Scholarship (FES-UA), is for students ages 3-22 who have a qualifying disability -in the for m of an educational savings account-in the amount of approximately $9,000.

    NEW ELIGIBILITIES! See below for the full list.
    FAQS

    Disability list

    How can I spend my unique ability funds?
    Click here for instructions.

    new disability list

    • a. Autism Spectrum disorder
      b. Cerebral palsy
      c. Down syndrome
      d. An intellectual disability
      e. A speech impairment
      f. A language impairment
      g. An orthopedic impairment
      h. Other health impairment
      i. An emotional or behavioral disability
      j. A specific learning disability, including, but not limited to dyslexia, dyscalculia, or developmental aphasia
      k. Phelan-McDermid syndrome
      l. Prader-Willi syndrome
      m. Spina bifida
      n. A High Risk Child aged 3-5
      (click here)
    • o. Muscular dystrophy
      p. Williams syndrome
      q. Rare diseases https://rarediseases.org/for-patients-and- families/information-resources/rare-disease-information/
      r. Anaphylaxis
      s. A hearing impairment, including deafness
      t. A visual impairment, including blindness
      u. Traumatic brain injury
      v. Hospital or homebound
      w. Identification as dual sensory impaired
    How can I spend my unique ability funds?
    Click here for instructions.
    A child who has a developmental delay in communication, cognition, or physical development

    Account Set Up


    Application process

    new disability list

    • a. Autism Spectrum disorder
      b. Cerebral palsy
      c. Down syndrome
      d. An intellectual disability
      e. A speech impairment
      f. A language impairment
      g. An orthopedic impairment
      h. Other health impairment
      i. An emotional or behavioral disability
      j. A specific learning disability, including, but not limited to dyslexia, dyscalculia, or developmental aphasia
      k. Phelan-McDermid syndrome
      l. Prader-Willi syndrome
      m. Spina bifida
      n. A High Risk Child aged 3-5
      (click here)
    • o. Muscular dystrophy
      p. Williams syndrome
      q. Rare diseases https://rarediseases.org/for-patients-and- families/information-resources/rare-disease-information/
      r. Anaphylaxis
      s. A hearing impairment, including deafness
      t. A visual impairment, including blindness
      u. Traumatic brain injury
      v. Hospital or homebound
      w. Identification as dual sensory impaired
    How can I spend my unique ability funds?
    Click here for instructions.

    Am I Eligible?

    Which Scholarship are you applying for?

    Are you a Florida Resident?

    Is your child in grades K-12?

    Does (or will) your child attend a private school?

    Does your income and household size fall within the current income guidlines?
    (* See attached income chart)


    Are you a Florida Resident?

    Is your child between ages 3-22 years of age?

    Does (or will) your child attend a private or homeschool?

    Does your child have an eligible disablity?
    (* See attached disablity chart)

    new disability list

    • a. Autism Spectrum disorder
      b. Cerebral palsy
      c. Down syndrome
      d. An intellectual disability
      e. A speech impairment
      f. A language impairment
      g. An orthopedic impairment
      h. Other health impairment
      i. An emotional or behavioral disability
      j. A specific learning disability, including, but not limited to dyslexia, dyscalculia, or developmental aphasia
      k. Phelan-McDermid syndrome
      l. Prader-Willi syndrome
      m. Spina bifida
      n. A High Risk Child aged 3-5
      (click here)
    • o. Muscular dystrophy
      p. Williams syndrome
      q. Rare diseases https://rarediseases.org/for-patients-and- families/information-resources/rare-disease-information/
      r. Anaphylaxis
      s. A hearing impairment, including deafness
      t. A visual impairment, including blindness
      u. Traumatic brain injury
      v. Hospital or homebound
      w. Identification as dual sensory impaired
    How can I spend my unique ability funds?
    Click here for instructions.


    Reset Selection

    Sorry, you are most likely not eligible for a scholarship.
    Click here to join our advocacy for expanded scholarship access.

    You Should Be Eligible For A Scholarship.
    Apply today through Step Up for Students or AAA Scholarships.

    FAQs

    SCHOLARSHIPS 2021-2022

    Income-Based Scholarships

    Designed to give parents on average a $7,000 voucher, to pay for the cost of tuition and fees at a private school. Once a child qualifies, the child will receive the voucher until they graduate from high school if they remain at a Florida private school.

    Who is eligible?

    A child who is school aged (5 by Sept 1st and entering kindergarten or above), whose family meets the income thresholds by household size.

    Where do I apply?

    There are two platforms.
    a. Step Up- stepupforstudents.org     b. AAA Scholarship aaascholarships.org

    When is Step Up for Students Open Enrollment Period for 2022-2023?

    Applications are currently open for 2022-2023.

    Will they ask me to provide income documentation for a renewal application?

    If they do, in the section where they request the annual income, put “0”. When they ask how you pay for your bills, write ” This is a renewal application so I don’t need to provide income documentation.”

    What is the scholarship amount?

    On average the voucher is $7,000 per child. Click HERE for funding amounts

    What are the age limitations?

    A child is eligible who is school-aged (5 by September 1st; entering kindergarten or above.), through 12th grade graduation.

    How do I determine my household size? 

    Household size is determined by counting all children and adults living in the house who are financially supported. (all the individuals benefits are reported under income eg. pension, retirement, unemployment etc.)

    Do siblings of disability recipients qualify without meeting the income thresholds?

    Yes. Please click here to access the directions of completing the income-based scholarship without submitting income information.

    How can the scholarship be used?

    To pay private school tuition and fees.

    What documents will be requested to show proof of income?

    On Step Up, if you are employed, you can use the last 30 days of paystubs. If you are self-employed, a profit/loss statement from the last 30 days.  On AAA Scholarship, your 1040 from the most recent tax year showing your wages and tips.*At any time they may request additional documentation.

    What documents do I need to provide to show proof of residency?

    A mortgage document or lease agreement, utility bill, or Florida driver’s license.

    Do I need to reapply every year?

    Yes, but once you receive the scholarship you do not have to qualify under the income guidelines in the following years.

    What is the process for renewal families?

    Complete an “intent to continue” and you do not have to submit an electronic application or upload any additional documents. (You can put in “0” for income and then when asked about paying for your bills, you put in the following language “This is a renewal application so I don’t need to provide income documentation”).

    How can siblings qualify?

    Click here and find out.

    Disability-Based Scholarships

    Designed to give parents an educational savings account to pay for approved services or products to support the education of their special needs child. The scholarship amount varies depending on the severity of the disability. (Scholarship amounts start on average at $9,000). Children as young as 3 can qualify until they turn 22 years of age.

    Family Empowerment (FES) Disability Scholarship: NEW
    Who is eligible?

    Children aged 3 (by Sept 1) through 12th grade who have one of the following qualifying disabilities:

    a. Autism Spectrum disorder
    b. Cerebral palsy
    c. Down syndrome
    d. An intellectual disability
    e. A speech impairment
    f. A language impairment
    g. An orthopedic impairment
    h. Another health impairment
    i. An emotional or behavioral disability
    j. A specific learning disability, including, but not limited to dyslexia, dyscalculia, or developmental aphasia
    k. Phelan-McDermid syndrome
    l. Prader-Willi syndrome
    m. Spina bifida
    n. Is considered a high-risk child
    o. Muscular dystrophy
    p. Williams syndrome
    q. Rare diseases https://rarediseases.org/for-patients-and- families/information-resources/rare-disease-information/
    r. Anaphylaxis
    s. A hearing impairment, including deafness
    t. A visual impairment, including blindness
    u. Traumatic brain injury
    v. Hospital or homebound
    w. Identification as dual sensory impaired
    Where do I apply?

    There are two platforms.
    a. Step Up- stepupforstudents.org     b. AAA Scholarship aaascholarships.org

    When is Step Up for Students 2022-2023 open enrollment period?

    Applications are currently opened for 2022-2023.

    When is AAA Scholarships 2022-2023 open enrollment period?

    AAA is currently closed since they reached their 1,000 application limit.

    Where do I go if I am a McKay family and I need more information about the process?

    https://www.stepupforstudents.org/mckayscholarship/

    What is the scholarship amount?

    It varies depending on the disability and if the child has an IEP and has a matrix score. It is projected that it will be
    in the range of $9,000. Click HERE for funding amounts.

    What is the process for renewal applicants on Step Up?

    You must complete the intent to continue/ application that includes; demographic information and the name of the school the child will attend etc. NO documentation will be requested.

    Can other siblings be added to the application to be considered for a disability scholarship?

    Yes. If you have already completed the application you can complete a 1065 form section 1 and upload it under the “print and send documents” tab along with the other required documents. a. Birth certificate   b. diagnosis letter c. residency documents

    Is there a process for a renewal AAA applicants to transfer to Step Up for Students?

    Yes. They will contact AAA and ask for a transfer document and then contact Step Up about wanting to transfer. Next, they will apply as a new applicant with all the required documentation. (They will maintain funding priority as a renewal applicant).

    What is the process for waitlisted applicants on Step Up?

    Waitlisted applicants will be required to complete an electronic survey of demographic information and private school they will attend. NO document uploads will be required. Teach Florida successfully advocated for 2,000 additional slots. Therefore, we expect that waitlisted applicants from 2021-2022 will be funded for 2022-2023.

    What documents need to be attached to a new application for processing?
    1. Proof of residency
    2. Diagnosis letter (Step Up) or Diagnosis Document (AAA)
    3. Sworn Compliance Statement.
    4. Child’s Birth Certificate
    5. Proof of Enrollment in a Private School (Each school has their own template).
      Attached is Step Up for Students guide of required documents .
    What documents do I need to provide to show proof of residency?

    A mortgage document or lease agreement, utility bill, or Florida driver’s license.

    What kind of practitioner can give the disability determination?

    The law states that it needs to either be a medical doctor or a licensed psychologist.

    for Step Up, can you submit an evaluation from a Speech/Language Pathologist, Occupational, or Physical Therapist?

    No. A doctor (pediatrician) or psychologist must write a diagnosis letters based on the therapists evaluation.

    Is there guide for the application process?

    Yes. Teach Florida has created the attached guide to help you through the process.

    Do I need to re-apply every year?

    Yes. You need to reapply each year as a renewal applicant.

    Do I ever have to requalify with a new diagnosis?

    Yes. If your child has a high-risk disability then the year they turn 6 by September 1st, they will need to requalify under a different disability category.

    How can the scholarship be used?

    As an Educational Savings Account (ESA), it can be used for a variety of uses. (Tuition and fees, specialized services, tutoring- technology tools, or curricula). Click here for instructions on how to spend the scholarship funds

    What is the deadline for submitting reimbursement requests for services and educational materials?

    Each year, because of the state’s fiscal year, there is a deadline for submitting any reimbursement for expenses occurring June 30 or earlier by August 31.

    What happens when I receive an award letter?

    If it is to be used for tuition, then the letter is submitted to the school along with the FES Student ID # (found under the “account activity” tab).

    Can the scholarship be used to pay for preschool tuition?

    If the preschool is an approved provider. It cannot be paired with the VPK funding so families have to choose.

    What is the process of getting my child a matrix review?

    Once a child is conditionally eligible for the award there is an option to request a matrix review. (contact your public school of residence ESE department to make a formal request). A matrix review if for children with severed disabilities.

    What is the sibling provision? (How can siblings qualify for funding?)

    Siblings of students who are awarded an FES Unique Abilities Scholarship can receive on average a $7,000 income-based scholarship without providing income documentation. Click here to see sibling instructions.

    When will funds be available?

    You will receive quarterly payments in September, November, February, and April (Reimbursements can be backdated to July 1st.

    Question Form

      (Click all that apply)
    • (Include all those living in your household plus non-married children 18+ if you are sharing income and expenses)
    • Drop files here or
      (e.g. denial letters, proof of income, IEP, matrix, etc.)
    • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.