Quality Educator Loan Assistance (QELA) Program
Through HB 211, the 2019 Montana legislature renewed the quality educator loan assistance program as a recruitment and retention aid for rural schools. The OPI is responsible for administering the program.
Newly hired quality educators who teach or work at an “impacted school” are eligible to receive state paid loan assistance for up to four years, so long as they remain a full time employee at an impacted school.
Due to the passage of SB70 by the 2023 legislature, the OPI will be extending the Quality Educator Loan Assistance Program application through May 21, 2023. SB70 removed the requirement that teachers at an impacted school be in a critical quality educator shortage area. This expanded the eligibility for many newly hired teachers working in an impacted school.
For applications already submitted, OPI will apply the new criteria to determine eligibility.
Use the application link to complete an application and upload required documents. Please note that approvals and payments will not be processed until the review process is complete for all applications, between June 15 and June 30, 2023. Letters to applicants will be sent at the same time. Please check back for updates. If there are any changes to this program, the changes will be posted here.
For information about Quality Educator Loan Assistance Program email OPILoanAssistance@mt.gov.