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Dyslexic Einstein Tutoring, LLC is a proud provider with Step Up For Students.

Family Empowerment Scholarships

(Formerly Gardiner/McKay)

The Family Empowerment Scholarship for Students with Unique Abilities (FES-UA) provides access to an education savings account (ESA) that functions like a bank account from which you direct funds to pay for tuition and fees for a private school, homeschooling options, therapies, tutoring and more.


The  Family Empowerment Scholarship for Students with Unique Abilities (FES-UA) is different than other state scholarships in that it allows parents to personalize the education of their children with unique abilities by directing money toward a combination of programs and approved providers like Dyslexic Einstein Tutoring. 

.2023-24 SCHOOL YEAR

For the 2023-24 school year, FES-UA is no longer accepting applications.


Families interested may apply here.

You will need these documents to complete your application: Proof of residency, birth certificate, IEP or Doctors Diagnosis with one of the qualifying disabilities, and Sworn Compliance statement (which no longer needs to be notarized).


Students receiving McKay Scholarship funds for the 2021-22 school year will transition to the Family Empowerment Scholarship for Students with Unique Abilities program (FES-UA) for the 2022-23 school year. 



The Family Empowerment Scholarship for Unique Abilities (FES-UA) is for Florida students 3 years old through 12th grade or age 22, whichever comes first, with one of the following diagnoses:

  • Anaphylaxis

  • Autism spectrum disorder

  • Being a high-risk child

  • Cerebral Palsy

  • Down syndrome

  • Emotional or a behavioral disability

  • Hearing impairment, including deafness

  • Hospital or homebound

  • Identification as dual sensory impaired

  • Intellectual disability

  • Language impairment

  • Muscular dystrophy

  • Orthopedic impairment

  • Other health impairment (including ADD and ADHD)

  • Phelan-McDermid syndrome

  • Prader-Willi syndrome

  • Rare diseases

  • Specific learning disability (conditions may include but are not limited to, dyslexia, dyscalculia, dysgraphia, or developmental aphasia)

  • Speech impairment

  • Spina bifida

  • Traumatic brain injury

  • Visual impairment, including blindness

  • Williams syndrome


Meets the age requirement of:

  • Students must be at least 3 or 4 on or before Sept 1.

  • Students entering kindergarten must be 5 on or before Sept 1.

  • Students entering first grade must be 6 on or before Sept 1.

To document your child’s disability you will be required to submit a copy of the student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP) or Doctor’s Diagnosis from a licensed medical doctor, osteopathic physician, or psychologist. You will also need to provide proof of Florida residency. For a list of required documents, click here


You can check your application status online at
• On the home page, click on “Logins”
• Click “Parent Login”    
• Enter your user ID and password
• Click "Application Status" 

What happens next?

Once a student is found eligible for the program, parents/guardians will receive a notification via email that they have been awarded or waitlisted for an FES-UA scholarship for the application year. When a student receives an FES-UA scholarship, the family affirms that they will enroll the student in a private or parochial school or register the student with their district as a home education student.


FES-UA scholarship recipients may not be enrolled in a Florida public school, including the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind; or the College-Preparatory Boarding Academy, a developmental research school authorized under s. 1002.32; a charter school authorized under s. 1002.33, s. 1002.331, or s. 1002.332; or a virtual education program authorized under s. 1002.45. Neither may students be utilizing a state-funded VPK program, or any other school choice scholarship such as the Family Empowerment Scholarship Florida Tax Credit Scholarship, Hope Scholarship, or New Worlds Scholarship. 

When can I expect to see funds in my account?

Award amounts are based on the date of award, not the date of eligibility. Funds will be deposited on a quarterly basis in the student’s accounts by Step Up For Students. Step Up For Students will receive funding from the Department of Education by the following dates:
• September 1
• November 1
• February 1
• April 1

Do I have to apply for a scholarship each year?

Each year, SUFS requires the parent to “RENEW” their child’s scholarship. You will not need to submit documents again, as there is a “Once In, Always In” clause in place. This is simply a process for you to tell SUFS that you wish to continue to participate in the scholarship. Students must complete a renewal application each school year in order to receive additional funding and remain active in the FES-UA program. Students do not have to requalify each year, with the exception of students who have aged out of a High-Risk diagnosis, or some hospital/homebound students.

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