Arizona Empowerment Scholarship Accounts

Active duty military families stationed in Arizona are eligible to apply for an Empowerment Scholarship Account through the Arizona Department of Education to pay for private school tuition or homeschool for children in kindergarten through 12th grade as well as preschoolers with a qualifying disability (must have an IEP from a public school). 

There are specific eligibility criteria for this scholarship as well as limitations on funding amounts and how funds can be used. ESA cannot be used in conjunction with tax credit tuition scholarships. For complete information on eligibility categories and how to apply, visit the AZED site or get in contact with the MCCS Yuma School Liaison

Families seekimg to use the ESA are highly encouraged to contact the School Liaison prior to applying to ensure they qualify and that the program will be a good fit for their child's educational needs. 

Arizona School Tuition Organizations (STO) Information for Military Students Attending Private Schools

Arizona state tax payers are allowed to donate a percentage of their state tax dollars through a variety of Private School tuition Tax Credit programs to support K-12 students attending Private/Parochial schools with tuition scholarships.   Arizona tax payers who choose to donate their state tax dollars to a private school or to a specific student attending a private school utilizing a S.T.O., will receive a dollar for dollar tax credit when filing their annual state income tax returns. 

Starting in the 2012-13 school year, dependents of U.S. Armed Forces members stationed in Arizona on military orders are eligible to receive tuition scholarships through the new “SWITCHER” Tax Credit.  Military students must have a scholarship application form on file with a (STO)!

Yuma Area School Tuition Organizations (STOs)

  1. Yuma’s Education Scholarship Fund for Kids, Inc.  (Y.E.S. Fund)  www.azyesfund.org 928-314-0033 4027 S. Navel Avenue  Yuma, AZ 85365
  2. School Tuition Association of Yuma, Inc.  (S.T.A.Y.)  www.azstay.org 928-782-5786 P.O. Box 515  Yuma, AZ 85366

 

Recommendations to Military Families with Students Attending Private Schools

  •  Download a scholarship application for each child by going to the Y.E.S. & S.T.A.Y. websites.
  • Complete the scholarship applications and check that your child is a dependent of an active duty member of the armed forces stationed in Arizona.
  • Include a copy of the military orders stationing the member in Arizona.
  • Mail the completed scholarship applications to Y.E.S. & S.T.A.Y.
  • Notify your child’s school finance director that you have submitted a scholarship application with Y.E.S. and S.T.A.Y.

Frequently asked Question

  1. If my military family applies for a tuition scholarship, is it guaranteed that funds will be donated directly to my child’s tuition? 
    -No, but the chances are very high that some funds may be applied towards your child’s tuition.
     
  2. Can military families stationed in Arizona still apply for a school tuition scholarship even though they don’t pay Arizona taxes themselves? 
    -YES
     
  3. Do military families still have to seek out donors to support their children with a tuition scholarship? 
    -No, but it would be advantageous to find a donor who is willing to donate their state tax dollars directly to your child.
     
  4. Can out of state family members donate funds towards a military child’s private school tuition and receive a tax deduction?
    -Yes, out of state contributors may make donations to a STO by claiming a federal charitable tax deduction for their donation.  It is recommended that they speak to their tax advisor to find out if they qualify for a federal charitable tax deduction.
     
  5. Who can I call if I have any questions about applying for a school tuition scholarship or the ESA?
    -You may contact the School Liaison at 928-269-5373 or email us here.

 

 

School Liaison Program- Make your next PCS a Positive Change of Schools.