The More You Know — The Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship (JPSN)

Q: My child has a disability and now has an Individualized Education Plan (IEP).  I have researched ways to provide the best education for my child and learned I can receive funding through the Jon Peterson Scholarship.  Can you tell me more about it?

A: Absolutely.  The Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship Program (JPSN) provides funding for the parents of children with special needs, as identified in the child’s IEP.  The program allows parents to select a private special education program for the child, rather than continuing to use their local public school system.  This funding provided by the scholarship may only be used for the services outlined in the child’s IEP.


Q: How do I know if my child is eligible?

A: In order to be considered for the JPSN Scholarship, your child must be attending school (kindergarten through 12th grade), must have been clinically diagnosed with a disability, and must have a current IEP.  You must then select an approved scholarship provider, who will submit the application on the child’s behalf.


Q: Is North Coast Education Services an approved provider?

A: Yes, we are!


Q: How much money can be awarded to a child through the Jon Peterson Scholarship?

A: The maximum amount of money the scholarship can award annually is $20,000 per qualified child.


Q: My child is already receiving funding through the Autism Scholarship.  Are they eligible for more money through the Jon Peterson?

A: Unfortunately, no.  You cannot receive funding from both scholarships.


Q: What is North Coast Tutoring Services’ role in the Jon Peterson Scholarship?

A: As an approved service provider, we will process the paperwork for your child.  We will then assign a professional, specially trained tutor to work with your child.


Q: If we use the scholarship money just for support services, can my child still attend public schools?

A: No.  Once your child receives the scholarship, your public school district is no longer required to provide him or her with a free and appropriate education (FAPE).  The purpose of the scholarship is to allow your child to receive both an education and support services through an approved and private provider.


Q: How long does the scholarship last?

A: The scholarship can last for either a full school year or for half of the school year.  It depends on when you apply.


Q: What are the deadlines for the scholarship?

A: The application period for the full school year is February 1, 2015 through April 15, 2015.  Those accepted will receive funding from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016.  The application period for the half school year is October 1, 2015 through November 15, 2015.  Those accepted will receive funding from January 1, 2016 through June 30, 2016.

Updated 2017 — Applications for the Jon Peterson Special Needs Scholarship are now accepted throughout the year!  Scholarship amounts are prorated based on the time of the application, with all scholarships ending June 30th.  Families are responsible for reapplying for the following year.


Q: Can I automatically re-enroll my child in the scholarship at the end of the school year?

A: No.  You must reapply to the scholarship every year through your service provider.


Q: Does North Coast Tutoring Services provide any other services for children with special needs?

A: Yes!  Every summer, the Creative Education Institute hosts an Academic Fun & Fitness Camp at Lakeland Community College*.  Commonly referred to as the “un-school camp,” the Academic Fun & Fitness Camp is designed specifically for children with learning differences, such as autism, ADHD, dyslexia, or Asperger’s Syndrome.  Campers are introduced to reading and math through games and multi-sensory activities.  They also become involved in science, sports, computers, music, theatre arts, and more!  The camp is a nurturing, welcoming environment where kids can just be kids, make friends, and have fun.  We will be posting a whole article about camp before the summer.


Q: Where can I find more information on the Jon Peterson Scholarship Program?

A: You can visit my sources – the Ohio Department of Education’s website ( and the North Coast Education Services’ website. The ODE website also provides a link to other approved providers for the JPSN scholarship.


Q: Who can I speak with at North Coast Tutoring Services about the Jon Peterson Scholarship Program and special needs opportunities for my child?

A: Ellen Karakul is our Program Director for both the Jon Peterson Scholarship Program and the Autism Scholarship Program.  You can e-mail her at, or reach her by phone at 440-914-0200.


*The Academic Fun & Fitness Camp is not affiliated with Lakeland Community College.



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Dave Hoffman