Extended school year services must be provided if a child’s IEP team determines, on an individual basis, that the services are necessary to provide Free Appropriate Public Education to the child. When considering the need for ESY, the team will determine if the child needs the services to continue to move toward accomplishment of the goals and objectives listed on the IEP.
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) defines Extended School Year (ESY) as special education and related services that:
1) Are available as necessary to provide free appropriate public education (FAPE);
2) Are provided to a child with a disability –
* Beyond the normal school year;
* In accordance with the child’s IEP;
*At no cost to the parents of the child; and
3) Meet the standards of the State Education Agency
Goals and Objectives
When considering ESY, the team will determine if the child needs the services to continue to move toward accomplishment of the goals and objectives listed on the IEP.
The need for ESY should be considered at the annual IEP meeting for each child on an IEP.
If the child’s IEP is held early in the school year, then a meeting to discuss ESY should be scheduled later in the year
Critical and Crucial
The IEP team should include any area that is crucial to the child’s progress toward “self-sufficiency”.
“Critical life skills” may include, but are not limited to: self-help, social skills, emotional support, mobility, communication, assistive technology, academics, and vocational skills.
Scheduling based on Individual Need
ESY scheduling, as to duration, amount and extent of services, must be determined by the individual needs of the child and cannot be determined by the district’s summer school schedule.
Previously Learned Skills
New goals and objectives are not to be added to the child’s IEP for Extended School Year.
The object is maintenance of previously learned skills.
Consider Related Services
If the IEP requires related services, that may be lost over an extended time without them, it must be considered for ESY.
Examples: speech, physical, occupational therapy, transportation, mobility training, vocation, and life skills training, etc.
If the IEP team determines that a child needs ESY services, the district cannot say no. Ask the district to either provide the services as determined by the IEP team or to put in writing why they cannot provide the services that are written in the IEP.
Reaching an Agreement
Many times, a district will provide the ESY services through a contractor. If the district and the parents cannot reach agreement, then the parents may exercise the procedural safeguards.
For More Information & Questions to Ask
The issue that determines if the child needs ESY is whether the progress made by the child during the regular school year.
For questions to ask to help in making these decisions, check out the PIC Brochure, Extended School Year: Helping to Accomplish Educational Goals.
View WY Dept of Ed’s guidance.
For more information and strategies to help your child accomplish educational goals through an Extended School Year (ESY), see PIC’s brochure Extended School Year (ESY) Helping to Accomplish Educational Goals