What is the Florida Gardiner Scholarship?
The Gardiner Scholarship is designed for Florida children with unique educational needs. Usually, it is awarded from age 3 or 4 through 12th grade or age 22, whichever comes first. The amount of Gardiner’s Scholarship in Florida depends on several factors, including grade level and the specific level of need of the child. The average award amount for the 2019-2020 school year is $10,400.
What makes the Gardiner Scholarship different?
The Gardiner Scholarship differs from other state scholarships because it allows you to personalize the education needs of children that would benefit from specialized programs. You can direct the money towards an approved program and provider that would help your child the most. If you think your child is eligible for Gardiner’s Scholarship, The IEP Advocate has all the resources you need to ease the application process.
Who is eligible to receive Gardiner’s Scholarship in Florida?
To be eligible for an IEP, your child must satisfy the following eligibility criteria:
- Is a resident of the state of Florida
- Is or will be 3 or 4 years old on or before the 1st day of September of the year in which you want to apply for program participation. Alternatively, your child should be eligible to enroll in kindergarten through 12th grade in a public school in Florida
- Is the subject of an Individualized Education Program
- Has an educational disability as defined by the Florida Department of Education
What does the Gardiner scholarship cover?
According to the Florida Department of Education, the Garnier Scholarship funds can be used for the following:
- Instructional materials;
- Specialized services by a relevant provider;
- Fees or tuition associated with enrollment in a home education program or other special program or institutions as approved;
- Fees for standardized, norm-referenced achievement tests or other examinations or assessments as approved;
- Contributions to the Florida College Savings Program for the child’s benefit;
- Contracted services provided by a school district or public school;
- Fees for part-time tutoring services provided by an individual with an approved certification;
- Fees for specialized summer education programs;
- Fees for specialized after-school education programs;
- Transition services provided by job coaches;
- Fees for annual evaluation of educational progress by a state-certified teacher;
- Fees associated with programs offered by Voluntary Prekindergarten Education Program providers;
- Fees associated with enrollment in a nationally or internationally recognized research-based training program for a child with brain damage or a neurological disorder;
The Scholarship Funding Organization that administers your child’s scholarship has the prerogative of verifying that parents spend the money on only eligible programs.
Can a child receiving the Gardiner Scholarship attend a public school?
No, your child cannot attend a public school while receiving the Gardiner Scholarship. If your child must get an education from a public school, it has to be on a contract basis, and not full enrollment. Children receiving contracted services provided by a school district or public school are not considered enrolled in that school under the rules of eligibility for the Gardiner Scholarship.
Do you wish for a hitch-free application process for your child’s Gardiner Scholarship in Florida? The IEP Advocate is here to help you. We have seasoned workers with an uncommon passion for ensuring children with special education needs to get the best education available.