Abbott, TEA offers $1,500 grants for students with cognitive disabilities impacted by COVID-19

HOUSTON – Gov. Greg Abbott and the Texas Education Agency announced Thursday a grant for children with cognitive disabilities and complex educational needs, according to a press release. The Supplementary Special Education Services (SSES) program allows eligible families of children to qualify for $1,500 to be used in the SSES marketplace.

Families can the one-time grant to purchase a broad range of educational resources and services, according to the press release. Students who met the qualifications must apply through an online application. These services do not reduce or eliminate the responsibilities of schools to provide a free appropriate public education (FAPE) to all students.

Officials said at least 18,000 students with significant cognitive disabilities across the state are eligible for this program, which was established last fall with $30 million in funds by Abbott and state leaders. Priority will be given to Texas families receiving income assistance and to families that have documented financial needs.

Following the submission of an application, eligible families will receive an email to create their SSES marketplace account through ClassWallet.

“The SSES program provides crucial academic resources to students with cognitive disabilities and will help close the educational gap caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Abbott in the release. “I urge eligible Texans to apply for this funding so that the State of Texas can partner with them and provide more support to Texas students.”

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