JB Pritzker, Governor, State of Illinois

2023-24 Program Updates: ECACE Scholarship and MAP Payment Implementation

08/21/2023

The Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) is sharing the following information to assist colleges in the administration of the Early Childhood Access Consortium for Equity (ECACE) Scholarship Program and the Monetary Award Program (MAP).

Click on one of the following links to be taken directly to the selected topic.

Submit ECACE First-term Claims
Submit MAP First-term Claims

Submit ECACE First-term Claims

Effective immediately, colleges may submit 2023-24 ECACE Scholarship first-term payment requests (i.e., claims) for students who have completed the prequalification process.

  • Within the ECACE system, submit claims for individual prequalified ECACE Scholarship recipients via the "Student Detail: Payment" screen or in batches for a group of prequalified students via the "Payment Request Entry" screen.
  • The maximum award amount that may be claimed during the academic year populates in the "Max Annual Award Amount" field of the ECACE system as part of the prequalification process.
    • Colleges must determine the term award amount(s) based on other financial aid the student is receiving, keeping in mind that the ECACE Scholarship is last payer, is not need-based aid, and can be used for any cost of attendance component.
  • Applications with Timely New, Timely Renewal, Untimely New and Untimely Renewal designations are all considered complete.
    • Schools are encouraged to submit payment requests for complete prequalified students as soon as possible.
    • Because ECACE prequalification results are available twice each week (on Wednesday and Friday mornings), regularly monitor whether there are new records for which payment can be requested.
    • The timely submission of payment requests allows ISAC staff to monitor program funding levels and ensure that available dollars are best leveraged to award as many scholarships as possible without exceeding the appropriation.
  • Submitting claims is a two-step process, which involves generating the request and then submitting the request.
  • By submitting a payment request to ISAC, a college is certifying that the student is enrolled and continues to meet all eligibility criteria.
  • Payment results are available in the ECACE system each morning (e.g., results for claims submitted through the end of the day on Tuesday, August 22 will be available in the ECACE system the morning of Wednesday, August 23).
  • A Payment Result Summary and Invoice Detail Report can be viewed or printed by selecting the Report tab in the ECACE system the day after a payment request has been processed.
    • The report includes Payment Results, Payment Exceptions and Invoice Detail about the payment claim.
    • Be sure to review the report to see which requests, if any, did not process as expected.
  • The disbursement of funds is processed by the State Comptroller's Office, and payments are made on a monthly basis.
    • Allow four to six weeks for payment processing (i.e., from the date a claim is submitted until funds are received at the college).
    • Refer to the State Comptroller's Website page for information on how to track payment.
  • The first-term priority payment request deadline date for this program will be announced once it has been determined.

Access Prequalification Data via "Student List Eligibility: View" Screen

As a reminder, colleges may access 2023-24 prequalification data via the ECACE system.

  • View a listing of students who have completed the 2023-24 ECACE Scholarship online application process by selecting the Student tab in the ECACE system, which will display the "Student List Eligibility: View" screen.
  • ECACE prequalification results are available twice each week: on Wednesday and Friday mornings.
  • Data is displayed for applications that have been reviewed by ISAC staff and list the institution as the college the student plans to attend [i.e., complete, incomplete and ineligible (based on student-reported data) applications may be included].
    • If an applicant submits additional documentation for a previously-listed incomplete or ineligible application, that record will be removed from the "Student List Eligibility: View" screen until after ISAC staff has reviewed the new documentation.
  • Only records for students who have completed the online application process – which includes submitting a complete ECACE Scholarship Program application to ISAC and completing a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) that results in a valid expected family contribution (EFC) – and who meet all initial program eligibility requirements (i.e., requirements other than those that must be verified by the college) are considered for prequalification.

Resources Available Online

More information is available at the following locations on ISAC's website:

GAP Access Data Protection and System Authorization

The availability of prequalified applicant data in the ECACE system provides a means by which this information may be shared with colleagues in other areas of the college who are working with prospective and current students. Reports listing ECACE applicants may be generated and edited, and then made available to other departments at your institution. All personally identifiable information (PII), such as an applicant's Social Security number (SSN), date of birth, and expected family contribution (EFC), should be removed from the report before the information leaves the financial aid office.

As a reminder, so that the proper level of security is maintained for administering ISAC programs, financial aid staff must have the appropriate level of access in order to view prequalification records, view payment request data, and/or submit claims. The school's primary administrator or a designated administrator is responsible for authorizing access levels.

Submit MAP First-term Claims

The 2023-24 MAP payment cycle has begun, allowing first-term claims to be submitted.

  • Colleges can submit first-term claims by accessing the MAP system, as well as by File Transfer Protocol (FTP).
  • First-term payment requests will be processed on a nightly basis as they are received from colleges, and then submitted to the State Comptroller for payment per standard operating procedures.

Program Reminders

  • A Payment Result Summary and Invoice Detail Report can be viewed or printed by selecting the Report tab in the MAP system the day after a payment request has been processed.
    • The report includes Payment Results, Payment Exceptions and Invoice Detail about the payment claim.
    • Be sure to review the report to see which requests, if any, did not process as expected.
  • Any 2023-24 payment requests that were submitted via FTP prior to today (August 21, 2023) will not be processed, and will need to be resubmitted by the college.
    • In order to prevent having to resubmit data in the future, never submit payment requests via FTP until after ISAC announces it is accepting the data for that academic year.
  • Because Payment Offset and Reconciliation procedures apply to MAP, refund checks should not be sent for cancellations/adjustments made throughout the award year.
    • Funds should only be returned to ISAC after a final reconciliation has been completed at the end of the regular school year.
  • The first-term priority payment request deadline date for this program will be announced once it has been determined.

Online Resources

More information regarding the payment process is available via:

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