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Financial aid for students with LD: Guides and resources

Financial assistance is available for students with LD of all ages, through many resources.

By Lisa Kay

If you are seeking financial assistance for the education of a child with a learning disability (LD), you may find the following resources helpful.

Grants and scholarships

Books

Dollars for College: The Quick Guide to Financial Aid for Students with Disabilities
by Garrett Park Press

This book is one in a series about funding a college education. The focus of this particular guide is on funding students with disabilities. To purchase the book, send $7.95, plus $1.50 for shipping and handling, to Garrett Park Press, P.O. Box 190, Garrett Park, MD 20896; Phone: (301) 946-2553.

Financial Aid for the Disabled and Their Families 2006-2008
by Gail Ann Schlacter & David R. Weber

This book identifies funding and financial aid resources for high school kids and older with disabilities on education, career development, training, assistive technology, etc. It's available for $40 from Reference Service Press, 5000 Windplay Drive, Suite 4, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762; Phone: (916) 939-9620 Email: info@rspfunding.com.

Foundation Grants to Individuals

This book is the 16th edition of the Foundation Center's publication that focuses on funding opportunities for individual grant seekers. There is a special section on educational scholarships and student loans. Price is $65.00.

On the Web

Foundation Grants to Individuals

This easy to use database maintained by the Foundation Center describes close to 4,800 foundations and public charities that fund individual grant seekers, such as students. It is available by monthly subscription for $9.95.

The Children's Scholarship Fund Program

This partial payment tuition program for low-income families awards scholarships children in grades K-8 via a national lottery. Scholarships are awarded to families, not children, so all children in a family entering a K-8 grade at the time of the award are eligible to receive scholarships. There are no academic requirements and grade retention does not affect the status of the scholarship. Phone: (212) 515-7100.

Creating Options: A Resource Guide on Financial Aid for Students with Disabilities (2007)

This annual resource paper is a comprehesive guide to financial aid in the form of grants, loans, work-study, and scholarships. The paper discusses how to go about finding available funding for postsecondary education and covers the technical words or phrases used to describe the various types of funding and the process involved with their disbursement. "Also included is a brief description of Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Agencies, the services that they may provide, and the interaction between the state VR agency and the financial aid office of a postsecondary institution. Finally, suggestions are offered about additional possibilities for financial assistance." This guide also is available from the HEATH Resource Center, 2121 K Street, NW Suite 220 Washington, DC 20037, Phone: 800-544-3284, Email: askheath@gwu.edu.

CollegeBoard.org

Locate scholarships, loans, internships, and other financial aid programs for college that match your education level, talents, and background. Complete the profile form, including a place to check for learning disability, and Scholarship Search will find potential opportunities from a database of more than 2,000 undergraduate scholarships, internships, and loan programs.

Buckley Moss Society, Anne and Matt Harbison Award

The P. Buckley Moss Society introduces an annual scholarship to provide incentive for, and recognition to, a graduating high school senior with a learning disability who has made arrangements to go to college. This is a grant of $1,000 made toward the tuition at the recipient's chosen college or university.

Anne Ford Scholarship Established for College-Bound Students With Learning Disabilities

The scholarship is an annual gift of $10,000 to a promising high school senior with learning disabilities who plans to pursue a university degree.

FinAid

This comprehensive financial aid website focuses on post-secondary school funding and lists college scholarships for the persons with a learning disability. There's also some information on ways to pay for private education institutions. One helpful part of this site is their Scam Alert section that lists the most common scholarship scams, including suspicious aid offers. You can also sign up for e-mail lists and discussion groups. All in all, it's a very useful site that's easy to navigate and straightforward in its presentation.

The Foundation Center Cooperating Collections

Located in every state, these free funding information centers in libraries and nonprofit resource centers provide a "core collection" of Foundation Center publications and products.

Loans

SLM Financial's K-12 Family Education LoanSM

SLM Financial, a Sallie Mae company, has created this loan to help families send their children to private K-12 schools. Parents may borrow between $1,000 to the total cost of the child's education, including tuition, books, room and board. Phone: (877) 834-9853

prepGATE K-12 Education Loan

Bank of America disburses loans to prepGATE-approved private schools on behalf of parents of K-12 students. Phone: (888) 353-4283

This loan is available to parents of students K-12 with special education needs . All education-related expenses, such a, tuition, room and board, books, fees, musical instruments and tutors are covered. Phone: (877) 255-2431

CitiAssist® K-12 Loan

This Citibank loan is provided to parents/cosigners of K-12 students for private schools. Phone: (800) 967-2400

Education One® K-12 Loan

Chase Bank provides this loan to parents of K-12 students with special education needs. Phone (877) 663-3906

eStudentLoan.com - Preparatory/Private K-12 School Loans

The eStudent Loan Finder helps you compare different loans and find the one that best suits you for your K-12 child's private education.

Comments from GreatSchools.org readers

03/26/2012:
"Mother of a beautiful artistic 15 year old daughter struggling in her academic classes. I've been advocating for her since the age of 7 and currently live in a county located in NYS that has no programs available or rather the funding is not available. We are to the point where she has nearly given up due to the lack of interest that our school distrist has for children with learning disabilities. My income is limited but just want to say that this site has surprised me with all the information that's available . The problem is none are offered in Schenectady county. "
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