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How to Apply for the ESA+ Scholarship

The application period for the 2024-2025 school year closed on March 1, 2024. The application for the 2025-2026 school year will open in February 2025.


The number one inside a circle Create a MyPortal Account 

as early as December

MyPortal is the platform families use to apply for the ESA+ Scholarship. It is where you will receive important notifications about your application.

Applying for the ESA+ Scholarship does not enroll your student in a school. You will need to follow the admissions process for your school of choice.

The number two inside a circleApply for the ESA+ Scholarship

February 1 – March 1

Note: apply any time in this window. There is no advantage to applying February 1st.

Add student(s) to your MyPortal parent account and complete your application(s). Parents applying for more than one student should submit a separate application for each student.

See the “Completing an Application” section of the “MyPortal Guide for Parents” (Guia-de-MyPortal-para-padres.pdf ( for instructions on how to complete the application.

  • You will be required to upload a copy of the student’s eligibility determination document (from a North Carolina IEP) within one week of submitting your application. Do not submit the application if you do not have this document.
    • For more information see Documentation of a Disability.
    • Families may apply any date during February; there is no advantage to applying on February 1st.


Apply by March 1.



The number three inside a circleCheck for Notifications

Early May

Check MyPortal regularly for an award offer or waitlist notification. If your student receives an award offer, you will have a deadline to accept or decline your student’s award in MyPortal.

If the number of eligible applications exceeds the amount of funds available, students will be added to a waitlist to fill slots that may become available at a later date.

If you receive an award offer, accept or decline the award in MyPortal (For more information see “After an Award: What are the Next Steps?”).


the number four inside a circleComplete Required Tasks

Mid-April – July 1

All applications are subject to residency verification. If you are selected for residency verification, we have resources to help you complete the process.

There are also several action steps for awarded students that are unique to ESA+. Keep an eye on MyPortal.

Make sure your School Choice is correct in MyPortal.


Frequently Asked Questions

No. MyPortal allows for one parent of record on the account. If you wish to make a change, the parent of record must email the program to request that the information be changed. An Identity Task will be added to your record and steps must be completed before these changes can be made. Change of Parent Form

When parents are separated or divorced and share joint custody (50/50) of the student(s), either one can be the MyPortal account owner and apply for a new award or renewal.

Parents may update their email address or mailing address in MyPortal. Other identity tasks require authorization. To make a change to any of the following information, the parent of record must email the program to request the correction. An Identity Task will be added to your record and steps must be completed before these changes can be made:

  • Parent or student name
  • Parent or student date of birth
  • Parent or student social security number

No. Students in preschool or transitional Kindergarten are not eligible for the Opportunity Scholarship program. The scholarship may only be used for students entering Kindergarten through 12th grade.


Yes. The program is designed to be flexible. Students who receive the ESA+ Scholarship may enroll full-time in a Direct Payment private school or choose from a variety of co-enrollment options (see below). Co-enrollment is contingent on the policies of the local public school district.

Enrollment options:

  • 1 private school
  • 1 home school
  • 1 home school + 1 private school (co-enrollment)
  • 1 private school + 1 private school (co-enrollment)
  • 1 private school + 1 public school (co-enrollment, reduced award)
  • 1 home school + 1 public school (co-enrollment, reduced award)

Note: There is a reduced award for ESA+ recipients who co-enroll in a public school.



Yes.  We encourage parents to submit an application for each student, on the same day, if possible.  Reminder: apply by 3/1/24!