Created in 2003, the Autism Scholarship Program provides scholarships to students on the autism spectrum who have an IEP that can be used at the participating school and/or private service provider(s) of their choice. The scholarship is renewable through high school graduation or the student's 22nd birthday.
When parents use an Autism Scholarship, they become responsible for making sure that their child is receiving all the special education services that they need. There is no longer a public school district responsible for making sure your child receives FAPE. Many parents are comfortable with this, but it's definitely something to make sure you're prepared for!
Who is eligible?
Any child between the ages of three and 21 who is on the autism spectrum and has an Individualized Education Program (IEP) is eligible to apply. This is the only Ohio voucher program that is available to preschoolers.
How much is the scholarship worth?
Autism Scholarships are worth up to $20,000 per year.
What can we use the scholarship for?
Autism Scholarships can be used toward tuition at the participating school of your choice. Participating schools can be private or public schools available to students outside of that district’s boundaries. In addition, scholarships may also be used at participating private providers. This empowers parents to mix and match services from schools and providers. Click here for a list of participating schools and providers. The list is available on the Ohio Department of Education’s website at https://scholarship.ode.state.oh.us.
How do we apply?
- Research - Check out the participating schools and providers. Use the evaluation tools, and choose the school and or provider on the list that is the best fit for your child.
- Apply to a School or Provider - Reach out to the school or provider of your choice and begin their application process. Your child must go through the regular admission process at the private school.
- Apply for the Scholarship - If your child is accepted, the school or provider will apply for the scholarship on your behalf.
When do we apply?
There is no deadline to apply for an Autism Scholarship. Applications are accepted and processed year-round, except during April. You can begin using the scholarship as soon as you receive it, which can be as soon as two weeks after you apply.
How many scholarships are available?
There is no cap on the number of Autism Scholarships available. Any eligible student who applies will receive a scholarship.
How many students currently receive the scholarship?
In the 2013-14 school year, there are 2,748 students who receive the Autism Scholarship.
Will I have to pay any costs?
Any costs above the $20,000 scholarship award are the responsibility of the family. It is important to make clear what services will be provided, what exactly will be covered by the scholarship, and what leftover costs there will be if any.
How is this scholarship funded?
The Autism Scholarship is funded through the State of Ohio through funds already allocated for that child’s education.
The Ohio Department of Education administers this scholarship program.
For more information on the program from the department, click here.
If you have any questions about this scholarship program,
please fill out the contact form on this page and we'll get back to you soon with answers.
You can also always give us a call at 614-223-1555 or 1-800-673-5876.