Empowerment Scholarship Account

An Empowerment Scholarship Account (ESA) is a unique scholarship program provided by the Arizona Department of Education for qualified students.

Who is eligible for an ESA?

In order to be deemed a qualified student, the student must meet the following criteria:

  • Is an Arizona resident; AND
  • Is identified as one of the following:
    • A child with a disability; OR
    • A child of an active duty member of the military; OR
    • A child who is a ward of the juvenile court and is residing with perspective permanent placement foster care; OR
    • A child who is a ward of the juvenile court and who achieved permanency through adoption; AND
  • Attended public school full-time for the first 100 days during the prior school year; OR, Received a scholarship from a student tuition organization that receives contributions to provide scholarships to students with disabilities.

If qualified, how much will the student receive?

The amount deposited into an individual’s ESA will vary. The amount is determined by calculating 90% of each student’s funding level as generated by the school finance formula. The formula includes specific “weights” for different categories of disability, grade levels and even school location.

What can ESA funds be used for?

Some of the eligible expenses are:

  • Tuition and fees at a private school for kindergarten and grades one through twelve
  • Textbooks required by the private school

Please contact the Arizona Department of Education for additional eligible expenses.

How can I get an ESA for my child?

The Arizona Department of Education will begin to accept preliminary applications to determine eligibility January 1st – May 1st each year. If a student is eligible, ESA will send an Award Letter to the parent; this letter will include the total yearly amount approved.

Arizona Department of Education
Empowerment Scholarship Account (ESA) Program
Phone: 602-364-1969
E-mail: esa@azed.gov

Please contact Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic School if you will be applying for an ESA and wish to attend our school.