Expense Report Help
The Quarter 1 Expense Report is due on, or before, September 30th, 2019.
ESA Recipients are contractually obligated to turn in a Quarterly Expense Report. Failure to do so can result in account suspension, termination, and fund forfeiture (sections 3 and 4. D. of the contract and Chapter 6 of the Parent Handbook).
If at any time you need greater assistance reporting your expenses, the ESA team is happy to help you. Please be aware that call volume is high the week Expense Reports are due.
You are also welcome to e-mail the ESA team with any questions you may have, and if you are encountering any technical issues, please include screenshots or images so that the ESA team can best assist you.
The ESA Expense Report Portal
The ESA Expense Report Portal is better viewed in Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge and IE11 web browser.
Getting Started: Expense Reporting
- You are required to register your account with ESA if it’s your first time logging in, or if you have changed your e-mail address with ESA. You can do that here.
- Your “User ID” is the e-mail address ESA has on file. If your e-mail address changed recently, you need to update it with ESA and re-register your account.
- ESA does not have access to your password and cannot reset your password for you.
- Check out the Frequently Asked Questions Page and Training Page for common questions and issues you may encounter.
- Detailed invoices are required. Here is an example.
More Information on Submitting your Expense Report through the Online Portal
Online Expense Reporting System
The portal works best when using either Internet Explorer or Chrome web browsers. At this time, please do not use tablets or phones, as it will not display correctly.
To begin using the system, create a self registration to access your ESA expense portal: https://esaonline.azed.gov/Account/Registration
- Only one account is required per applicant (even if you have multiple students)
- Your username will be your email address and a temporary password will be sent to the email account on file. The email will reference ADEConnect; ADEConnect is the platform hosting the portal
- Once receiving your password, you can log into the portal at: https://home.azed.gov/Portal/, or click the monitor icon below
- Training materials for the system are located on the Training Page: http://www.azed.gov/esa/training/
- Please do not submit expense reports until completed – expense reports cannot be modified once they are submitted
If you are having issues logging into the expense portal, please refer to these tips:
- Have you registered yet? Please be sure that you have gone to the homepage and registered your email address and created a password to login with. Simply applying to the program does not create a user account.
- If you have registered and you are not receiving an email for a password reset or it is looping you back to the main screen, make sure the email address is the same email you used when you were first accepted into the program.
- If it is the same email address and you are still having issues, please call an ESA Specialist to further assist you.
FAQ: Logging into the ESA Expense Report Portal
I can’t log in. Have you registered your account with ESA? Applying for ESA and registering are two different processes. Even if you aren’t sure, or think you have, you can double check by clicking this link . The easiest way to check this is by entering your ESA Application number. This number can be found on the last page of the contract, it is on most correspondence from ESA, and also on the e-mail confirmation following application submission.
I am registered and I still can’t log in. I click “forgot password” and nothing happens. The user ID is the e-mail address ESA has on file. If you changed this with ESA at any time, you must re-register. ESA does not have access to your password and cannot reset your password for you. If you are locked out of your account, please wait 15 minutes and try again.
I can log in, but now I don’t know where to go. ADE Connect is a web portal utilized by the Arizona Department of Education. ESA is a small portion of that tool. You log through ADE Connect in order to access the ESA Expense Report Portal (for expense reporting). After logging in, to get to the ESA Portal, you must click “ESA Expense Report Portal”
I can log in, but the system is “looping me“. I click on “ESA Expense Report Portal” and it takes me back to the ESA web page. This means something isn’t quite right and can be best resolved by calling ESA (602-364-1969). E-mail works as well, but it is not recommended for a prompt resolution of this issue.
I can log in, but I am getting a “server error”. Is the website down? This can be fixed by clearing out the website cookies or “browsing privately”. For example, with Google Chrome, if you right click on the browser icon and select “New Incognito Window”, this should help.
I have tried everything and I still can’t access the ESA Expense Report Portal. Please call ESA at 602-364-1969. If you are e-mailing, please provide as much detail as possible including screen captures or pictures of what you are experiencing so we can best assist you.
FAQ: Submitting Your Expense Report
Have you viewed our training videos? Click here.
The line item isn’t balancing. There’s a red box around the transaction total and I can’t get it to work. If you click the expense category, it will expand the line item. The system is trying to balance the transaction total to all the numbers within the line item. Double check shipping and handling, taxes, and any additional entries. If they add up to equal each other, contact ESA for more assistance (602-364-1969 or [email protected]). Please provide as much information as possible in the e-mail. Screen captures are very helpful.
I select my receipt/invoice to upload and I can’t save it. This is likely because the system needs more information before a Save Button “appears”. Scroll further down the page to see if there are additional sub-categories of information. For example, for Private School Expenses there are additional sub-categories of Tuition, Fees, Textbooks, Uniforms. You are required to enter information here before you can save. Additionally, if the charge is for tuition, click “New” next to tuition and add the additional information. Once this is complete, you will be able to save your upload.
I can’t upload my documents. Make sure the file specifications are correct.
- File name cannot have any special characters. Only letters a-z, numbers 0-9, and a hyphen.
- Allowed file extensions (file types): .jpg .png .gif .doc .docx .pdf
- Individual file size should be less than 10 MB.
- It’s helpful to give the file name the most simple name possible:
- Private School Invoice
- Therapy Invoice
- Therapy Credential
There are fraudulent charges on my account. What do I do? If you suspect there have been fraudulent transactions made with the ESA Prepaid Card, first call Bank of America to report these charges. Then, call ESA so the account can be noted. When reporting these expenses, they can be categorized as “Other Goods and Services” and you are encouraged to provide as much supporting documentation as possible. Generally, Bank of America is able to resolve these issues and refund the card for these types of charges. However, if Bank of America does not do this, ESA will ask these funds be repaid by the Account Holder.
There is an accidental charge on my account. What do I do? If the card was accidentally used for something, it is first recommended you seek the card be refunded directly by the vendor. If that is not possible, funds can be repaid by personal check, cashier’s check, or money order made out to the Arizona Department of Education. This can be handed in-person at the Arizona Department of Education building where the ESA office is located, or sent by postal mail. Certified mail (is not required) but does provide receipt that it was sent and received. You can categorize this as “Other Goods and Services”.
How do I categorize a refund? If you have a full refund, you are welcome to categorize the full refund and charge as “Other Goods and Services” and provide as much documentation as possible. If it is a partial refund, the charge itself must be appropriately categorized and the partial refund can be categorized as “Other Goods and Services”.
I logged into my expense report and there’s nothing for me to do. My only options are “No Expenses” and “View Report”. The ESA Expense Portal has been upgraded to reflect card transactions. First and foremost, you want to verify if the expense has posted to the Bank of America account. You can do this by calling the number on the back of the card, signing up for online banking, or checking your bank statement. Once the payment posts, it can take 24-48 hours for it to appear on the portal.
My expenses will not post to the bank by the deadline, or I know I will use the card after the 20th deadline. You are welcome to submit a Zero Expenses report if your expenses are not showing. If there are pending expenses, you can anticipate reporting these expenses in the following quarterly report. This is OK. The only exception to this is for Quarter 4. If there are additional expenses accrued after June 20th, ESA will reach out at a later date to notify your report has been opened to allow submission of the additional expenses. As Quarter 4 is the end of the contract year, all expenses must be included on that report and cannot “roll over”. We ask if at all possible to avoid using the card from the 20th to the end of the month for ease of reporting.
I didn’t use the ESA card this quarter. Is it OK to submit a zero expenses report? Even if no funds are spent, you are required to submit a Zero Expenses report. Please be aware, Account Holders are required to spend a portion of funds for the contract year on the at least the subjects of reading, grammar, mathematics, social studies and science (contract section 4. A., pages 4, 5, 9 of the Parent Handbook, and A.R.S. § 15-2402 (1))
My payment has posted to the Bank of America Account and it still isn’t appearing on the online portal after 48 hours. If you are able to verify with Bank of America that the payments you made have posted, it has been longer than 48 hours from the time it posted, and the expenses are still not showing on the portal, please contact ESA for more assistance (602-364-1969 or [email protected]).
My expense report is going to be late. Can I have an extension? The Quarterly Expense Report is due on the 20th of the last month of every quarter (September, December, March, June). If the report is 10 days late, respective accounts will be suspended. If the report is still showing as unsubmitted while funding disburses (the following months on the 15th and 30th), the account does not, and will not, receive funding. If the report is 70 days late, the Account Holder will be terminated and all accounts under the Account Holder will be closed. The Account Holder cannot reapply. The only option is to appeal following a termination. Details of how to appeal are in the termination letter.
FAQ: Expenses and Expense Review
I submitted my Quarterly Expense Report and it’s still showing in “submitted” status. When will it be approved? ESA receives over 5,500 new expense reports quarterly and has a very small team to review the reports. It is highly unlikely that each report will be reviewed by the next deadline, or even within a few days of submission. Reports are reviewed both randomly, and higher risk reports are reviewed first. If your report is showing as “submitted” by the Expense Report deadline, you have fulfilled your contractual obligation at that time.
How do I know if what I want to purchase is allowed or disallowed? The Parent Handbook is an excellent resource to review prior to using the ESA card. If after you read the handbook and you have additional questions, you are welcome to call ESA 602-364-1969. If you have specific expense questions (for example, is a certain curriculum or service allowed?), you are welcome to e-mail ESA [email protected] and we will provide a response in writing.
How can I request information if an item/service is considered an allowed or disallowed expense with ESA funds? For specific item requests, you must e-mail ESA and provide the following information:
- Your name and/or student name.
- Be as descriptive as possible.
- You must provide a link to the item or service.
- If you are asking if a credential is sufficient for a service, a copy of the credential must be provided or a description of the type of credential must be provided.
I have multiple students on the ESA program. Can I use funds on one card to pay for another student’s expenses? The cards and funding that are distributed are specific to the student associated with the card. Combination of funding or using cards for other students (on, or not on the program) is a violation of the Empowerment Scholarship contract and can result in account termination.
Disallowed Expense Reminders:
- School supplies (pens, paper, ink) are disallowed.
- While the renting of instruments is allowed, the purchase or rent-to-own of instruments is disallowed.
- Group Fitness, Swim, Gymnastics, Dance and Martial Arts are allowable expenses for all students, and an appropriate credential must be provided.
- The purchase of food, travel, room/board with ESA funds is disallowed.
- Amazon Prime is a disallowed expense.
- ESA funds do not cover the purchase of laptops.
- Funds cannot be used to pay for Internet fees.
- ESA funds cannot be used for a copay.
- Cash withdrawal attempts are disallowed and can result in account termination.
Detailed invoices are required and especially required for services such as tutoring and educational therapies. A Square, Pay Pal, or Point of Sale Receipt is not sufficient.
- A detailed invoice includes: the name of the student, the name of the vendor (and provider, if that is different), the service provided (just “tutoring” or “therapy” is not sufficient. Please expand on what kind of tutoring, what kind of therapy), hour/rate of service, and dates.
ESA does not pre-approve vendors. If an Account Holder has providers or vendors in mind for educational therapies or services, ESA is unable to say if a certain vendor or provider is approved. The Parent Handbook lists services that are allowable to be paid with ESA funds. Depending on the service, a credential is required. So as long as a sufficient credential is provided for an allowable service, it is allowed. ESA Staff are happy to answer any questions about allowable services and credentials. Although it is not required by ESA to review a specific credential, it is strongly recommended that the parent obtains a copy of the credential prior to using the ESA card. ESA Account Holders will have to repay funds if they are unable to provide a credential for the service.
My Expense Report was Rejected. Now what? Please follow the link provided in the notification e-mail and review the reasons for rejection. Often items are rejected because not enough information was provided (a required credential or detailed invoice). If you have any questions, ESA Staff are here to help. 602-364-1969
I received a Disallowed Expense Letter. Now what? When expenses are disallowed, this means the ESA team has determined that funds must be repaid. This is either following an unresolved rejected report (ESA asked for required credentials by a specific deadline and did not receive them), or the expense is disallowed as stated in Arizona State Statute and the Parent Handbook. Once disallowed spending is found, the account is suspended until resolution or funds are repaid.
How do I repay funds? You don’t have to wait to receive a rejected report or disallowed letter in order to repay funds. At any time, we accept repayment in form of a personal check, cashier’s check, or money order only, made out to the Arizona Department of Education. This can be handed in-person at the Arizona Department of Education building where the ESA office is located, or sent by postal mail. Certified mail (is not required) but does provide receipt that it was sent and received.