Education Savings Accounts

The Students First Act, introduced by Governor Reynolds and signed into law on January 24, 2023, makes state funding available to support the success of every K-12 student in Iowa. Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) provide funds for eligible families from the State of Iowa. Eligibility is spread over three years until becoming available to every child for the 2025/2026 school year.

2024-25 School Year, funding per student equal to the state student rate, approximately $7,635 per student
-All kindergarten students, regardless of income
-All public school or homeschool students who transfer to a private school, regardless of income
-All private school students with a household income at or below 400% of federal poverty level
-All students who have previously received an ESA, regardless of income

2025-26 School Year, funding per student equal to the state student rate
-All K-12 students in Iowa (regardless of income, grade or transfer status)

The ESA application will open June 1, 2024. Applications will be due on June 30, 2024, for the 2024-2025 school year. Applications are valid for one year; families must apply annually to remain eligible for the program.

Sign up for notifications of ESA details on the Iowa Department of Education website.

The number being used to determine qualification for ESAs will be line 4 (Iowa Taxable Income) on the 2023 Iowa 1040 form ( Note that the form has changed significantly from previous years, so encourage families to check with their tax professional for planning purposes. The change to the tax form could make a big impact for how many students qualify for ESAs (in a positive way). If families thought they wouldn’t qualify until year 3, we encourage them to check with their tax professional to make sure and to discuss any year-end tax planning that they may be able to do.

Q. What information do I need to set up a Students First ESA for my child?

A. Parents/Guardians applying will need the following information to set up a Students First ESA:

  • Parent/Guardian Legal Name
  • Parent/Guardian Contact Information (email address and phone number that can receive text messages for updates) and Preferred Language (English or Spanish)
  • Parent/Guardian Current Residential Address
  • Address used for the 2022 Iowa State Tax Return, if different from current address 
  • Parent/Guardian ID Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number)
  • Parent/Guardian Spouse ID (Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number)
  • Student’s Legal Name
  • Student’s Date of Birth
  • Student’s Residential Address (if it is different from the parent/guardian address)

Q. What information will be used to verify Iowa residency?

A. Proof of Iowa residency is based on the parent/guardian’s 2022 Iowa State Tax Return. If the parent/guardian did not complete a 2022 Iowa State Tax Return, additional documentation will be required. Details of approved documents to submit for residency verification are listed below.

Approved Residency Verification Documents

  • Current Iowa Driver’s License
  • OR
  • Proof of Residence (current mortgage, lease, utility bill) and one of the following:
  • Iowa Voter Registration Card
  • Claim of Homestead Credit or Military Tax Exemption on a home in Iowa
  • Active checking or savings account with an Iowa address
  • Other documents and correspondence initiated during tax periods with an Iowa address
  • OR
  • Other written and signed narrative from parent/guardian including a stated claim of Iowa residency, and other related documentation reflecting residency.

Q. Where can I find out more details about ESAs?

A. Learn more about ESAs through the Iowa Department of Education website.

Household Size400% of Federal Poverty Level (2024)
Each Add’l Person+ $21,520