BOOST Scholarship Program

The Broadening Options and Opportunities for Students Today (BOOST) Scholarship Program provides scholarship awards for some students who are eligible for the free or reduced–price school meals program (FARMs) to attend a participating nonpublic school. Priority will be granted to students who qualify for FARMs and receive a BOOST scholarship award during the 2023-2024 school year, as well as their siblings.



The parent application for the 2024-2025 school year will open shortly. Visit this webpage in February 2024 for updates. Information provided here is subject to change, following the passing of the fiscal year 2025 budget bill.





Information for Parents/Guardians


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To be eligible, a student must:

  • Qualify for free and reduced-price meals (FARMs);

  • Be enrolled or accepted at a participating nonpublic school for the 2024-2025 school year; and

  • Be entering grade kindergarten – 12th grade for the 2024-2025 school year. (Pre-K students are not eligible.)

Due to limited funding, we are unable to provide scholarships to every qualified applicant. Priority is given to students who were recipients of a BOOST award in the previous year.

As part of the application, parents will be asked to upload their 2023 Federal 1040 tax returns so that their annual income and household size can be verified. The U.S. Department of Agriculture posted the income cut-offs for the 2024-2025 school year.

Parents must complete the online BOOST Scholarship application for any children they wish to be considered for a BOOST Scholarship award.

No, the scholarship may only be used at a nonpublic school that has decided to participate in BOOST. A list of nonpublic schools participating in the BOOST Scholarship Program can be found on the left-hand side of this page.

The award amounts are dependent on several factors, including household income, the academic level of the student, and any financial assistance that the school provides to the student. The BOOST Advisory Board will meet in Summer 2024 to determine award amounts.

The check is sent to the school, and you (the parent/guardian) must come to the school to sign the back of the check. The BOOST scholarship award may be reduced if it exceeds the tuition owed to the school.

For example:

  • The school’s annual tuition is $10,000 and the school offers the student a discount of $4,000. The parent is only responsible for paying $6,000 in annual tuition to the school.

  • $10,000 - $4,000 = $6,000

  • If the BOOST award value comes out to be $7,750, it will be reduced to $6,000 because it can’t be higher than the amount owed to the school.

  • The school will receive a check for $6,000 to credit the student’s tuition. If the parent already made tuition payments over the summer, then the school will owe the parent a refund.

You can get information in several ways!

  • See the list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the left-hand side of this webpage.

  • MSDE will also be offering virtual customer service support sessions. Details coming soon!

  • You can send an email to boost.msde@maryland.gov.

  • You can call Allison Sanborn at (410) 767-3575.

  • You can send us a message through your Submittable online application account.


Parent/Guardian Customer Service Support Sessions

MSDE personnel will review program requirements and walk through the application. Session dates will be posted shortly.



Information for Nonpublic Schools


Only nonpublic schools who were approved to participate in the Nonpublic Textbook Program are eligible to apply to participate in the BOOST Scholarship Program. Visit the Nonpublic Textbook Program webpage to see a list of schools that were approved to participate in that program.

This funding opportunity is designed for nonpublic schools registered to operate in the state of Maryland. To be eligible to participate, a nonpublic school must:

  • Hold a certificate of approval from or be registered with the State Board of Education;

  • Be approved to participate in the Nonpublic Textbook Program;

  • Provide at least a 1st grade level program;

  • Complete an application to the BOOST Scholarship Program;

  • Comply with all reporting requirements by the specified date.

You can get information in several ways!

  • See the list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the left-hand side of this webpage.

  • MSDE will also be offering virtual customer service support sessions. Details coming soon!

  • You can send an email to boost.msde@maryland.gov.

  • You can call Allison Sanborn at (410) 767-3575.

  • You can send us a message through your Submittable online application account.


Nonpublic Schools Customer Service Support Sessions

MSDE personnel will review program requirements and walk through the application. To attend a session, click on the date below:

Monday, January 22, 2024
3:30 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.
View the Session


When and where will the BOOST Advisory Board meet?

The Board convened on July 31, 2023 from 10am - 12pm and on December 14, 2023 from 3-4pm. For details and a recording of the meetings, visit the BOOST Advisory Board meeting webpage.



Contact:

Allison Sanborn, Program Manager
Main office line: (410) 767-3575

James Clark, Part-time Data Analyst
Office: (410) 767-0064

Nicole Obregon, Special Fiscal Programs Administrator
Office: (410) 767-2939