Preschool-Age Financial Aid Program

AG Bell Preschool-Age Financial Aid Awards Distributed

The AG Bell Preschool-Age Financial Aid Committee is pleased to announce a total of $89,980 was recently awarded to 93 families who are committed to a listening and spoken language outcome for their children who are deaf and hard of hearing. Awards ranged from $250 to $1,500 and award recipients reside in 23 U.S. states and Canada. Here’s a note from one parent: 

“We just received the Preschool-Age award check and would like to say a big THANK YOU for all your help. This will help pay for the Montessori Academy where my son is doing so well. I would also like to tell you that my son passed the gifted exam and I am very proud of him! Please know that you make a huge difference in his life and should be proud of the difference you are making in society for hard of hearing children and families. My son is a great example that a severe hearing loss is not an obstacle for achieving a great education and a bright future, and I want to thank you for sharing this great journey with us.”

About the Program

The Preschool-Age Financial Aid program is for families of preschool-age children who have been diagnosed with a moderate to profound hearing loss and who are in pursuit of spoken language education for their child. Awards are intended to assist with expenses for things such as auditory support services, speech-language therapy, preschool tuition, etc. Families who apply should be committed to a listening and spoken language approach for the education of their child’s listening, speech and cognitive skills. Awards are made once a year, generally in the month of October. Award amounts vary; over the past three years, awards have ranged from $275 to $1,100.

Details and an application packet for the 2013 program will be available on this web page in June 2013.

2012 Preschool-Age Financial Aid Program Eligibility Criteria (subject to change for 2013)

In order to be eligible for this program, applicants must meet all of the following criteria:

  • The child’s bilateral hearing loss or Auditory Neuropathy must have been diagnosed before the child’s fourth birthday. Children with unilateral (one-sided) hearing loss or unilateral Auditory Neuropathy do not qualify.
  • The child’s hearing loss must be in the moderate to profound range. This means that applicants must have an unaided Pure-Tone Average (PTA) of 55 dB or greater in the better hearing ear, in the speech frequencies of 500, 1000 and 2000 Hz.* Children with cochlear implants meet this eligibility requirement.
    *This may not apply to children who have been diagnosed with AN. For information on required documentation for AN, please see the "documentation" section on the Application Submission Page of the application packet.
    Formula for calculating the PTA: On the unaided audiogram, look at the results for the better hearing ear at 500, 1000 and 2000 Hz and add those three numbers together, then divide that total by three. The result is the Pure Tone Average. To be eligible for this award, the child’s PTA must be 55 dB or greater.
  • Listening and Spoken Language must be the child’s primary mode of communication.
  • The child must be at least four (4) years of age as of December 31, 2012 and must not yet be entering first grade for the 2012-2013 school year.
  • The child must reside in the United States (including territories) or in Canada.
  • Parents/guardians should be able to clearly outline their need for financial assistance and plans for usage of grant funds.

Note: While membership in AG Bell is not required, preference may be given to AG Bell members.

Do You Have Questions?

Click here to see the most commonly asked questions about AG Bell's Financial Aid Programs. If you still have a question or need clarification, please send us an email. Responses may take up to three business days, so please plan accordingly when submitting your email.