McKay Scholarship

The John M. McKay Scholarships for Students with Disabilities Program, commonly known as the McKay Scholarship Program, is a school choice option which may be available to public school students with IEPs or 504 Plans.

This program was created to provide educational options to parents of students with disabilities. Currently, more than 30,000 Florida students are participating in this program.

By participating in the McKay Scholarship Program, your student may be able to attend a different public school in your district, attend a public school in an adjacent district or receive a scholarship to attend a participating private school.

To be eligible for the McKay Scholarship Program, a student must

  • apply for the program prior to withdrawing from public school,
  • have an Individual Education Plan (IEP), or 504 Accommodation Plan issued under s. 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (with duration of more than six months)

and

  • Have been enrolled and reported for funding in a Florida public school for the school year prior to applying for a scholarship (Grades K-12); or
  • Have been a pre-kindergarten student who was enrolled and reported for funding in a Florida public school during the school year prior to applying for a scholarship, or
  • Have received specialized instructional services under the Voluntary Prekindergarten Education Program from an approved provider pursuant to s. 1002.66 during the previous school year; or
  • Have attended the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind during the preceding school year’s student membership surveys (Grades K-12).

Choice Program students may receive transportation regardless of their proximity to the Choice school. Parents must provide transportation to the closest bus stop in order to be eligible. Bus stops will only be available within the Choice Transportation Zone for each school and additional stops will not be created. If a student requires an ESE bus as stated on their IEP, then the school of Choice must be within 10 miles from their home.

To find out if your student is eligible, you may apply for the McKay Scholarship Program on the School Choice website at http://www.fldoe.org/schools/school-choice. Select the McKay Scholarships link, then Parents, and then the link titled Apply for a McKay Scholarship.

To learn more about your child’s educational options, please contact your school district’s Parental Choice Office at 561-649-6818. You may also contact the Florida Department of Education, Office of Independent Education and Parental Choice Information Hotline at 1-800-447-1636, or visit the School Choice website at http://www.fldoe.org/schools/school-choice and click the McKay Scholarships link.

In order for a student to be eligible for the program, intent to participate in the McKay Scholarship Program must be filed on the School Choice website prior to withdrawing from public school.

The deadline to apply for the private school option is:

  • July 1,* for the first payment period of the school year
  • September 1,* for the second payment period of the school year
  • December 1,* for the third payment period of the school year
  • February 1,* for the fourth payment period of the school year

* these are projected dates, confirm on http://www.fldoe.org/schools/school-choice

The deadline to apply for public school option is:

  • June 1 for placement at the start of the first semester
  • October 31 for placement at the start of the second semester

Please note this information serves to notify you that your child may be eligible to participate in the McKay Scholarship Program. This information does not guarantee your student’s eligibility.

McKay letter in English (pdf)
McKay letter in Spanish (pdf)
McKay letter in Creole (pdf)
McKay letter in Portuguese (pdf)

Link:
http://www.fldoe.org/schools/school-choice

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