Succeed Scholarship Program

  • Voucher
  • Enacted 2015
  • Launched 2016

Arkansas provides private school vouchers to students in foster care, students with disabilities, and the children of active-duty or reserve members of the U.S. military. Students who fall under these categories must have previously attended public school, unless they are children of active-duty military families or they receive a waiver from their school district. Learn more about the program’s details on this page, including eligibility, funding, regulations, and more. 

We do not administer this program.

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  • 795

    Participating Students (2022–23)

  • 14%

    of Students Eligible Statewide

  • 51

    Participating Schools (2022–23)

  • $6,391

    Average Voucher Value (2022–23)

  • 57%

    Value as a Percentage of Public School Per-student Total Spending

Arkansas’s Succeed Scholarship Program Participation

Students Participating
School Year Ending

Student Funding

Each student’s voucher is funded at the public school foundation funding amount for the current school year ($7,413 in 2022-23), up to but not exceeding the amount of tuition and fees at the private school.  

(Last updated December 18, 2023) 

Student Eligibility

Students must be accepted to an eligible private school and A) be in group foster care, B) have an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), C) have an individualized service plan in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), D) be diagnosed by a physician as having a disability defined by 20 U.S.C.1401(3)(A), E) participated in the Succeed Scholarship Program during the prior school year and not yet graduated from high school or reached 21 years of age, or F) be the dependent of active-duty or reserve members of the U.S. military. Students who meet the aforementioned requirements must also have been enrolled in an Arkansas public school for at least one year unless they receive a waiver from their home district superintendent or are dependents of active-duty or reserve members of the U.S. military.  

SB294, Gov. Sanders’ LEARNS Act, became law on March 8, 2023. The LEARNS Act created an Education Freedom Account (EFA) Program and provided that all students currently receiving a Succeed Scholarship would automatically transition into the EFA Program. To continue in the Succeed Scholarship Program and continue to receive funds for the 2023-2024 school year, students must complete an annual student certification. The Division of Elementary and Secondary Education accepted annual student certifications from March 14, 2023, through April 2, 2023. 

(Last updated December 18, 2023) 

EdChoice Expert Feedback

The Succeed Scholarship Program helps hundreds of Arkansas students with special needs, foster kids, and the children of members of the U.S. military access schools that are the right fit for them. In 2023, Arkansas created a universal education savings account program, the Education Freedom Accounts Program, which will eventually absorb the Succeed Scholarship. In the 2023-24 school year, students who had been receiving Succeed Scholarships were moved into the new EFA program and grandfathered in with the same funding they would have received through Succeed. By 2024-25, Succeed will be fully phased out so Arkansas students may use the EFA program.  

The average Succeed scholarship size is about $6,300, which is about half of the average expenditure per student at Arkansas district schools, although it is likely significantly less than the average cost per pupil for students with special needs.  

Arkansas’ scholarship program generally avoids unnecessary and counterproductive regulations. 

(Last updated December 18, 2023) 

Rules and Regulations

  • Income Limit: None 
  • Prior Year Public School Requirement: Yes, with exceptions 
  • Geographic Limit: Statewide 
  • Enrollment Cap: none, except students in foster care are capped at 20 
  • Maximum voucher amount: $7,413 
  • Testing Mandates: Nationally norm-referenced tests 
  • *Limited to students with special needs, in foster careor dependents of U.S. military personnel 

School Requirements: 

  • Be accredited by the Arkansas State Board of Education or an associate member of the Arkansas Nonpublic School Accrediting Association or another accrediting association that is recognized by the state board of education as providing services to individuals with severe disabilities or be in the process of becoming accredited 
    •  If not accredited within four years, schools are no longer eligible until they receive accreditation 
  • Be in operation for at least one year, provide a CPA-validated statement of fiscal solvency and insurance coverage, or provide a surety bond or letter of credit for the amount of scholarship funds for any quarter 
  • Notify Arkansas Department of Education of the specific grade levels and services available to students with disabilities when applying to participate in the program 
  • Be accountable to parents for meeting the educational needs of the student 
  • Affirm under oath semi-annually that the student has been enrolled in and is attending and participating in the school 
  • Employ teachers with no less than a bachelor’s degree 
  • Comply with federal anti-discrimination provisions 
  • Comply with existing laws governing private schools 
  • Adhere to the tenets of the private school’s published disciplinary rules before expelling any student using a voucher

(Last updated December 18, 2023) 

Governing Statutes

Ark. Code Ann. §§ 6-41-901 through 907

(Last updated December 18, 2023)