(A) The Jon Peterson special needs scholarship program is hereby established. Under the program, beginning with the 2012-2013 school year, subject to division (B) of this section, the department of education annually shall pay a scholarship to an eligible applicant for services provided by an alternative public provider or a registered private provider for a qualified special education child. The scholarship shall be used only to pay all or part of the fees for the child to attend the special education program operated by the alternative public provider or registered private provider to implement the child's individualized education program, in lieu of the child's attending the special education program operated by the school district in which the child is entitled to attend school, and other services agreed to by the provider and eligible applicant that are not included in the individualized education program but are associated with educating the child. Beginning in the 2014-2015 school year, if the child is in category one as that term is defined in division (B)(1) of section 3310.56 of the Revised Code, the scholarship shall be used only to pay for related services that are included in the child's individualized education program. Upon agreement with the eligible applicant, the alternative public provider or registered private provider may modify the services provided to the child.
(B) The number of scholarships awarded under the program in any fiscal year shall not exceed five per cent of the total number of students residing in the state identified as children with disabilities during the previous fiscal year.
(C) No scholarship or renewal of a scholarship shall be awarded to an eligible applicant on behalf of a qualified special education child for the next school year, unless on or before the application deadline the eligible applicant completes the application for the scholarship or renewal, in the manner prescribed by the department, and notifies the school district in which the child is entitled to attend school that the eligible applicant has applied for the scholarship or renewal.
The application deadline for academic terms that begin between the first day of July and the thirty-first day of December shall be the fifteenth day of April that precedes the first day of instruction. The application deadline for academic terms that begin between the first day of January and the thirtieth day of June shall be the fifteenth day of November that precedes the first day of instruction.
Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 25, HB 59, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2013.
Added by 129th General AssemblyFile No.28, HB 153, §101.01, eff. 9/29/2011.