McKay Scholarship, The Gardiner Scholarhip,


Bridging the Gap Scholarship

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Abi’s Place is registered with the Florida Department of Education as a provider in the McKay and The Gardiner Scholarship Programs.  The Scholarships are provided to offset a portion of tuition at Abi’s Place.

According to the Florida Department of Education,

McKay Scholarship

“The McKay Scholarships for Students with Disabilities Program, originally created in 1999, provides scholarships for eligible students with disabilities to attend an eligible public or private school of their choice. Students with disabilities include K-12 students who are documented as having an intellectual disability; a speech or language impairment; a hearing impairment, including deafness; a visual impairment, including blindness; a dual sensory impairment; an emotional or behavioral disability; a specific learning disability, including, but not limited to, dyslexia, dyscalculia, or developmental aphasia; a traumatic brain injury; a developmental delay; or autism spectrum disorder.”

“Any parent of a public school student with a disability who has an Individual Education Plan (IEP) or a 504 accommodation plan may receive a McKay Scholarship if the student meets the following requirements:

  • By assigned school attendance area or by special assignment, the student has spent the prior school year in attendance at a Florida public school (the student was enrolled and reported by a Florida school district for funding during the preceding October and February FTE surveys in Pre-K through grade 12), or
  • The student was enrolled and reported for funding by the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind during the preceding October and February student membership surveys in kindergarten through grade 12, or
  • The student received specialized instructional services under the Voluntary Prekindergarten Education Program during the previous school year and has a current IEP developed by the local school board in accordance with State Board Rule or a 504 accommodation plan, or
  • The student is a dependent child of a member of the United States Armed Forces who transfers to Florida from out of state due to a parent’s permanent change of station orders, and
  • The parent has notified the school district in a manner that creates a written or electronic record of the notification (this is done by filing intent on the School Choice website) at least 60 days prior to the date of the first scholarship payment, and
  • The parent has obtained acceptance for admission of the student to a private school that is eligible for the program.”

Families interested in the McKay Program, please go to the following website:

Once on the website, click on the McKay Scholarships link and then the link titled “Apply for a McKay Scholarship” located on the quick navigation bar on the left-hand side of the screen. If additional assistance is needed, parents may contact the Office of Independent Education and Parental Choice at 1-800-447-1636.

Requirements of McKay Scholarship for all students receiving funding from the state:

  • Copy of Parent’s Driver License (Parent listed for McKay and who signs check)
  • Copy of student’s birth certificate
  • Copy of Parent Social Security Card (Parent listed for McKay and who signs check)
  • Required Health Forms (blue and yellow)
  • Parent Affidavit (attached and must be notarized)

The Gardiner Scholarship

(Previously know as the PLSA Scholarship or Step Up for Students)

We are thrilled to share a new scholarship fund available to families who are not eligible for the McKay Scholarship.  This scholarship is specifically for children ages 3-21 who have been diagnosed with a s

pecial educational need, who have not attended public school, and are not eligible for the McKay Scholarship.  Please go to this website for all the details.


Bridging the Gap Scholarship

Abi’s Place understands that individual economic circumstances vary.  We value you and your child and we are committed to providing limited financial assistance as needed.  The Board of Directors will determine the number and amounts of each scholarship based on funds available and awarded by July 18th

Please find the application links here and some of the requirements.




In addition, each application is kept in our system for two consecutive scholarship cycles after which the applicant must re-apply.  Once we determine how much we can give each year, we review the following items when considering approval:

• Completion of scholar application – The application must be completed in its entirety to be reviewed. Partially completed applications will be kept on file for 3 months and additional information may be submitted to make the application complete within that timeframe.

• Amount of scholarship requested — amounts are based on funds available and how many qualified applicants complete the application process.

• Household income – Incomes below $61,000 per year are reviewed first.

• Potential Impact – Our mission is to fund families in need of an intense, multi-discipline program with low ratios for their child.

Should your scholarship be awarded, you will be asked to complete volunteer hours based from your experiences and/or availability.    We also encourage families to share photos and stories to publicize the Bridging the Gap Scholarship.   Funding will be applied to the end of the semester.  Applicant receiving the scholarship who are not enrolled at the beginning and at end of the semester will voluntarily void the award. Scholarship payments will be made directly to Abi’s Place.


 Please email application and supporting documents to


Please note Abi’s Place does not and shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion (creed), gender, gender expression, age, national origin (ancestry), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or military status, in any of its activities or operations. These activities include, but are not limited to, hiring and firing of staff, selection of volunteers and vendors, and provision of services. We are committed to providing an inclusive and welcoming environment for all members of our staff, clients, volunteers, subcontractors, vendors, and clients.