Private School Scholarships

Apply now for a scholarship for the 2024-25 school year.

Opening the Door to a Private Education

Education isn’t one-size-fits-all. Just as every student is different, every classroom is different, and every school is different. Students learn best in an academic environment that is best suited to their learning needs.

Step Up For Students supports Florida students and families in building a stronger future through personalized education by opening doors with private school tuition assistance.

View the 2024-25 Scholarship Award Amounts >

Frequently Asked Questions >
Opportunities available through:
The Florida Tax Credit Scholarship (FTC)
The Family Empowerment Scholarship for Educational Options (FES-EO)

Scholarships for Private Schools

K-12 students regardless of household income, who are residents of Florida and eligible to enroll in a K-12 public school, can receive a scholarship worth an average of $8,000 to attend a private school that best meets their academic needs.

With recently passed legislation, the following will go into effect on July 1, 2024:

  • Active-duty members of the U.S. military may apply for a private school scholarship as soon as they receive permanent change of duty station orders to Florida.
  • The Hope Scholarship, which was created to support families whose K-12 students have experienced bullying, will merge with the Family Empowerment Scholarship for Educational Options (FES-EO) and Florida Tax Credit Scholarship (FTC) programs. Families whose students benefited from the Hope Scholarship for the 2023-24 school year will now apply through the FTC/FES-EO programs for the 2024-25 school year and will be processed as a renewal student. New families interested in the Hope Scholarship, will now also apply through the FTC/FES-EO programs for the 2024-25 school year.

Handbooks

For more information, download our handbook.

Who Is Eligible?

Scholarships are available to all students, regardless of household income, who are residents of Florida and eligible to enroll in a K-12 public school.

Priority is given to families whose household income is 400% of poverty or below as outlined in the income priority guidelines or who meet the following criteria:
  • Renewing students of the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship and/or Family Empowerment Scholarship
  • Children in foster care or out-of-home care
  • Homeless children 

With recently passed legislation, the following will go into effect on July 1, 2024, if signed by the Governor:

  • Active-duty members of the U.S. military may apply for a private school scholarship as soon as they receive permanent change of duty station orders to Florida.
  • The Hope Scholarship, which was created to support families whose K-12 students have experienced bullying, will merge with the Family Empowerment Scholarship for Educational Options (FES-EO) and Florida Tax Credit Scholarship (FTC) programs. Families whose students benefited from the Hope Scholarship for the 2023-24 school year will now apply through the FTC/FES-EO programs for the 2024-25 school year and will be processed as a renewal student. New families interested in the Hope Scholarship, will now also apply through the FTC/FES-EO programs for the 2024-25 school year.
Apply Now

Find a School

Search the catalog of eligible private schools
Private School Directory

How Does It Work?

Families need to complete an application through Step Up For Students. Once awarded a scholarship, work with your selected participating private school to enroll your student through the Step Up For Students EMA platform. You will be notified when it is time to log into your account to approve scholarship funds that will be issued directly to your school electronically.

Scholarship amounts vary by county and grade but are worth an average of $8,000. The scholarship awards will first pay for tuition and fees at eligible private schools. Remaining funds can be accessed through an education savings account (ESA) and used to pay for:

  • Instructional material
  • Curriculum
  • Tuition for full-time or part-time education at an eligible postsecondary educational institution or approved apprenticeship program
  • Fees for nationally standardized norm-referenced tests and other assessments
  • Contracted services provided by a public school or school district
  • An approved online course
  • Tuition as a private pay student at Florida Virtual School,
  • Fees for a “Choice Navigator,” which is an optional service provider intended to help guide parents through the myriad of choices that will become available to them through their ESA

Stepping Up To Success

“Without Step Up I don’t know if I would be able to reach the goals I’m about to reach.”

Nanya
Step Up Scholarship Recipient
“I’ve always felt education was No. 1 over everything, I always wanted to prove it to myself.”

Zoe Elverillo
Step Up Scholarship Recipient
“Private school is different. The classes are smaller…There’s not one teacher that doesn’t care (here).”
Carlos Escobar
Step Up Scholarship Recipient

Video Library

How to create your FTC/FES-EO account
How to complete an FTC/FES-EO application
Document checklist for FTC/FES-EO applications
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