Ohio Autism Scholarship Program is designed as an aid for Ohio students on the autism spectrum to receive benefits up to $27,000 for education services from a private provider, including tuition at a private school. As well that amount will climb to $31,500 in October and $32,455 in 2022. It is not a huge jump, but every dollar helps. The Autism Scholarship Program allows parents to choose a private or alternative public service provider for a child with autism. Services received must relate to a student’s disability.
All Ohio students who have an IEP for autism can choose to take the Ohio Autism Scholarship. The scholarship provides funding so that a student can be educated outside of the district, by a private and authorized provider of the family’s choosing. In taking the scholarship, a family waives the public school’s obligation to provide their student a Free Appropriate Public Education in hopes that the outside placement will better meet the student’s needs.
The Ohio Autism Scholarship is a good parachute when families and districts cannot agree upon an appropriate educational plan or placement. Taking the Ohio Autism Scholarship avoids conflict and gives the student a fresh start in a new environment, rather quickly.
If a student is older than three years of age and younger than 22 and has been identified by the school district as having autism, the student is eligible for the Ohio Autism Scholarship program.
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Students with autism are eligible to receive up to $27,000 per year in scholarship funding. All students who apply will receive funding.
The Ohio Autism Scholarship can be renewed every year until the student graduates from high school or turns 22 years old.
First, search for a service provider for your child. Once you have selected a provider, the provider will provide you with the Ohio Autism Scholarship application form.
Student Funding for Ohio Autism Scholarship
The state will compensate a student’s parents or custodian for education services up to $31,500 per year in FY2022 and $32,455 per year in FY2023 and beyond. A child must be in the Ohio Autism Scholarship for a full academic year to claim this amount. If transportation is listed on the IEP as a related service, the parent may obtain transportation from a registered private provider that is approved by the state to provide such transportation and claim it for reimbursement through the Ohio Autism Scholarship program. Parents are responsible for covering any costs in addition to the maximum amount allowed per year.
Student Eligibility for Ohio Autism Scholarship
Students must be ages 3 to 21, diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder, registered in a public school special education system and have a current IEP. Students may use the voucher whether or not they were enrolled previously in public schools, though students not previously enrolled in public schools must formally transfer into the public system for IEP purposes. (They do not need to leave their private schools.)
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Rules and Regulations for Ohio Autism Scholarship
- Income Limit: None
- Prior Year Public School Requirement: None
- Geographic Limit: Statewide
- Enrollment Cap: None
- Voucher Cap: $31,500 per year in FY2022 and $32,455 per year in FY2023 and beyond
- Testing Mandates: None
- *Limited to students with special needs
- Register with the state
- Comply with state nondiscrimination codes
- Demonstrate fiscal soundness
- Have properly credentialed staff
- Teachers and other staff working with children must undergo background checks
- In operation at least one full year
- Have adequate liability, property and casualty insurance certified by a certified public accountant
- Provide regular student progress reports to parents and resident public school
FAQ on Ohio Autism Scholarship
What is Ohio Autism Scholarship program?
The autism scholarship program (asp) gives the parents of children with autism, who qualify for a scholarship, the choice to send the child to a special education program other than the one operated by the school district of residence to receive their education and the services outlined in the child’s individualized education program (iep).
Who is eligible to apply for the Ohio Autism Scholarship?
Children who are at least three years old, but less than twenty two years old, have been identified by their school district of residence as a child with autism, and have a current, finalized iep with that district are eligible for the autism scholarship.
How do i apply for the Ohio Autism Scholarship?
If a student is eligible for the autism scholarship program, the first step is to register for services with a participating autism scholarship provider. That provider will give you the form to apply and assist you by submitting your application online.
When will Ohio Autism Scholarship applications be accepted?
Applications are accepted throughout the year.
Will every child who applies be awarded a Ohio Autism Scholarship?
If a student meets the eligibility requirements, they will be awarded a scholarship. There is no cap on the number of autism scholarships available.
What is the value of the Ohio Autism Scholarship?
The autism scholarship amount is the lesser of the fee charged for the child by the special education program or up to twenty-seven thousand dollars per program year. The child must be in the program for the full academic year to receive the full amount.
Will parents have to pay any amount of money for Ohio Autism Scholarship?
Parents may have to pay for services not covered under the scholarship. Also, if the provider’s fees for covered services exceed the amount of the scholarship, the parent is responsible for the balance.
Can a child attend a public school and use the Ohio Autism Scholarship?
No. The scholarship is an educational choice program. If a student is approved for the scholarship, the public district is no longer responsible for providing a free appropriate public education (FAPE). The student must use the scholarship to obtain their education and the supportive services indicated on their IEP.
Are children with who are in private school or are home schooled eligible to apply for Ohio Autism Scholarship?
Yes, but they must first obtain an IEP from their district of residence.
If my child is awarded the Ohio Autism Scholarship, how long can he/she continue to use the scholarship?
Scholarships are approved through June 30th of the current program year. Each spring, parents who are interested in continuing to receive the scholarship must submit a renewal application. If the student has a current IEP and is still qualifies for special education under the category of autism, then they can continue to receive the scholarship for the next program year. Scholarships can be renewed until the child graduates from high school or reaches age twenty two.