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Family Connections Montana

Grants and Awards

Licensed or registered child care providers are eligible to apply for grants and scholarships that unlicensed providers are simply not eligible for. Different grants and scholarships are available throughout the year to aid in costs associated with meeting license requirements and increasing the quality of child care to all children through professional development awards.

Child Care Mini Grants

  • We have quarterly mini grant deadlines.  Announced deadlines and applications can be found on our home page when they are available.

Professional Development Incentive Awards-PDIA (formerly known as Merit Pay)

  • There are two options for PDIAs; applicants may only apply for only one of the two. Both require a current certificate with The MT Practitioner Registry to apply. Please be advised that Registry applications can take up to 6 weeks to process.
  • The Professional Development Incentive Award (formerly Merit Pay I) has two track available to choose from: 25 hours of training (non-college classes) for the award of $200 and 50 hours of training for the award of $400.
  • The Professional Development Incentive Award – Higher Ed (formerly Higher Education Merit Pay) has two award options: $250 for the completion of 2-5 college credits and $750 for the completion of a minimum of 6 credits.
  • Visit for PDIA applications, full eligibility requirements, and Professional Development Incentive Award Policy to understand how awards are granted.

Certified Infant Toddler Course and Certified Preschool Course

Due to high interest and priority registration to STARS participants, an application process has been established for Certified Infant Toddler and Certified Preschool courses. We will post applications and requirements on this site and communicate application deadlines as they become available.

Upon completion of the Certified Infant Toddler and Certified Preschool Courses, a $500 Professional Development Incentive Award is granted. Additionally, there is a Continuity of Care Stipend up to $1600 for participants that completed the Certified Infant Toddler Course. An application required to receive this stipend, and is available at