Original and switcher tax credit scholarship guidelines

Original and Switcher Scholarship Guidelines

  • The Student must reside in Arizona and be eligible for an STO scholarship
  • For K-12th grade students and preschool students with disabilities (must have an IEP or MET from an Arizona public school) attending a qualified nongovernmental school in Arizona
  • Kinder student must be 5 years old as of September 1. *See age requirement below.
  • A new scholarship application must be submitted each school year.
  • STO cannot award scholarship solely based on donor recommendations
  • STO must consider financial need when awarding scholarships
  • No scholarship cap
  • Scholarship must be used solely for tuition expenses

Original Scholarship Prerequisites:

  • none

Switcher Scholarship Prerequisites:

  • The student must have attended a public school as a full-time student or attended a public school program that offers services to students with disabilities for at least 90 days of the prior year and transferred from public school to a qualified private school. Arizona Public School Enrollment  Verification form must be completed; OR
  • Is enrolling or currently enrolled in a private school kindergarten; OR
  • The student is enrolling or currently enrolled in a qualified private school preschool program for students with disabilities (preschool students must have an IEP of MET from an Arizona public school: a 504 plan does not meet the requirements); OR
  • The student received a scholarship from the Switcher program under one of the above criteria in a prior year and the child continued to attend a private school in subsequent years; OR
  • The student received a low-income corporate scholarship or a disabled/displaced corporate scholarship in a prior year and the child continued to attend a private school in subsequent years. A Scholarship Verification form must be completed if the scholarship was from another organization other than YES Fund for Kids.

applicant information

Kinder Age Requirement

Arizona requires that children must be 5 years hold as of September 1 to be eligible for a scholarship, though a school district governing board may allow admitting children into kindergarten who will reach the age of 5 by January 1. This means that YES Fund for Kids may only provide scholarships for kindergarten to children that meet the public school age requirement. The intent of the private school tax credit program is to move children from public school to private school. According to the Arizona Department of Revenue, if the child is not eligible to be in public school, they are not eligible for a scholarship. Proof that a public school governing board would accept the student turning 5 between September 2 and January 1 will be required to consider these students for a scholarship.

Financial Need Determination

YES Fund for Kids will use the Income Eligibility Guideline requirements established under the National School Lunch and Child Nutrition Acts for Free and Reduced Lunches according to USDA, shown in the table on the Low Income Corporate page of this website. Federal income tax form 1040 pages 1 & 2 must be submitted to further verify information and financial need. Recommendations are allowed and considered for both the Original and Switcher tax credit programs, but the student must meet the guidelines and prerequisites to be awarded a scholarship. Priority will be given to students and siblings of students on the YES Fund for Kids wait list.

Communicate with Others

The Arizona Individual Private School Tuition Tax Credit program gives parents the unique opportunity to raise support for their child's education. With some effort and planning, parents can reduce their child's tuition to almost nothing. If 4 donors each make $1,000 tax credit contributions and recommend a child, at least 96% or $3,840 can be awarded to him/her as a tuition scholarship. The Tax Credit is a way of re-directing tax dollars that will otherwise go to the state to satisfy the donors tax liability.

Parent Resouce Guide

Empowerment Savings Accounts

Students with an Empowerment Scholarship Account (ESA) may not receive a scholarship from a school tuition organization (STO) pursuant to title 43 A.R.S. 15-2402. For more information regarding an ESA, please visit the Arizona Department of Education website.

Scholarship Award demographics


A.R.S.43-1603 STO reporting requirement