Thursday, April 14, 2011

Time to Start Thinking About Extended School Year Services (ESY)

Summer is coming soon and it's time to start thinking about Extended School Year Services (ESY).

ESY Services focus on extending the school year for students with learning disabilities and are decided upon by the IEP Team. There are conflicting views about whether kids need a break from school activities during the summer but regardless, it's important for kids to remain mentally stimulated in some capacity.

I have my own theories and hopefully I'll post something soon at Easy IEP Help. Great Schools has an article here if you want to know more.

Many IEPs are coming up and it's a good time to discuss ESY but be prepared BEFORE going into the IEP. Find out what programs are available ahead of time so you don't waste time in the IEP trying to figure it all out. The most important things to discuss are goals and objectives moving forward and how the previous goals have impacted the current progress.

As a parent, don't feel pressured to have your child taking classes during the summer, even if they're behind. Chances are, if they have an IEP, they're probably behind. You know your child best and if they truly need a break it's understandable. Find something else to stimulate their brain.

Don't forget to use the break to get in plenty of physical activity too. It's just as important for healthy and growing brains.