Oklahoma

Oklahoma Equal Opportunity Education Scholarships

  • Tax-Credit Scholarship
  • Enacted 2011
  • Launched 2013

The Oklahoma Equal Opportunity Education Scholarship program offers individuals and businesses a tax credit for qualifying donations to scholarship-granting organizations (SGOs). SGOs are nonprofits that provide private school scholarships to qualifying students. The program additionally provides tax credits for qualifying donations to educational improvement grant organizations (EIGOs), public school districts, and public school foundations.

Learn more about program funding, eligibility, and regulations on this page.

We do not administer this program.

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  • 2,113

    Participating Students (2020–21)

  • 89%

    of Families with Children Income-Eligible Statewide

  • 6

    Scholarship Organizations (2021–22)

  • 106

    Participating Schools (2020–21)

  • $2,645

    Average Scholarship Value (2020–21)

  • 28%

    Value as a Percentage of Public School Per-student Spending

Oklahoma’s Equal Opportunity Education Scholarships Participation

Students Participating
School Year Ending

Student Funding

Students may receive scholarships for either the greater of $5,000, or 80 percent of the statewide average per-pupil expenditure as determined by the National Center on Education Statistics to cover all or part of the tuition, fees, and transportation costs of a participating private school. Scholarships are worth up to $25,000 for eligible students with special needs.

(Last updated December 18, 2023)

Student Eligibility

Students are eligible if they live in households with incomes up to 300 percent of the free and reduced-price lunch program ($166,500 for a family of four in 2023-24) or attend or live in the attendance zone of a public school designated by the state as “in need of improvement”. Once a student has received a scholarship, the student and any siblings in the same household remain eligible until high school graduation or they reach 21 years of age. Students with special needs who were served by an Individual Education Plan (IEP) while attending public school, received a qualifying diagnosis affecting learning from a clinical professional, or were provided services under an Individualized Service Plan (ISP) through the SoonerStart program and determined to be eligible for district services may also receive scholarships through the program.

(Last updated December 18, 2023)

EdChoice Expert Feedback

Oklahoma’s tax-credit scholarship program provides the opportunity for thousands of families to access schools that best fit the needs of their students. Oklahoma’s tax-credit scholarship program for low- and middle-income students helps thousands of students access schools that are the right fit for them, but policymakers could do more to expand educational opportunity.

Students are eligible to receive a scholarship if they are from a household earning up to 300 percent of the free and reduced-price lunch program (the equivalent of 555 percent of the federal poverty line, or $154,013 for a family of four in 2022–23) or attend or live in the attendance zone of a public school designated by the state as “in need of improvement.” Nearly 90 percent of Oklahoma students are eligible to receive a scholarship via this program. Statewide, less than one percent of students participate in one of Oklahoma’s private educational choice options (including the Lindsey Nicole Henry Scholarships for Students with Disabilities).

The average scholarship size is about $2,600, which is only about 28 percent of the average expenditure per student at Oklahoma’s district schools, though the cap on scholarship values is somewhat higher ($5,000 for most students and $25,000 for students with special needs). Tax credits are worth 50 percent to 75 percent of the value of the contributions to scholarship organizations, but only $25 million in tax credits are available annually, which is equivalent to only 0.84 percent of Oklahoma’s total K–12 revenue.

To expand access to educational choice, Oklahoma policymakers should significantly increase the amount of available tax credits and expand eligibility to all students. The program could also be converted into an education savings account to ensure that all students have access to the education that’s the right fit for them, whether private school or a customized course of education.

Oklahoma’s scholarship program generally avoids unnecessary and counterproductive regulations.

(Last updated December 18, 2023)

Rules and Regulations

  • Income Limit: 300 percent x FRL
  • Prior Year Public School Requirement: None
  • Geographic Limit: Statewide
  • Enrollment Cap: None
  • Scholarship Cap: Conditional
  • Testing Mandates: None
  • Credit Value: 50% of contribution; 75% if a commitment for equal contribution is made 
  • Per Donor Credit Cap: $1,000 (single) / $2,000 (married) / $100,000 (business)
  • Total Tax Credit Cap: $25 million each for donations to eligible SGOs and donations to benefit public schools

SGO Requirements:

  • Use at least 90 percent of contributions for scholarships
  • A 501(c)(3) entity and registered as an SGO with the state  
  • Spend a portion of expenditures on scholarships for students who qualify for the free or reduced-price lunch program ($55,500 for family of four in 2023–24) in an amount equal or greater to the percentage of eligible low-income students in the state
  • Ensure scholarships are portable during the school year and can be used at any qualified school that accepts the eligible student
  • Conduct background checks on employees and board members
  • Maintain full and accurate records on contributions, expenditures and other documentation required by the state
  • Files financial documents with state tax commission and reports to the governor and legislature  

(Last updated December 18, 2023)

Governing Statutes

Okla. Stat. tit. 68 § 2357.206

(Last updated December 18, 2023)