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Acronym Soup: Extended School Year (ESY)

Acronym Soup: Extended School Year (ESY)

Sometimes, deciphering Special Education information begins to feel more like searching through a bowl of “acronym” soup. With OT, IEP, LEA, FAPE, AT, IDEA and more, the abbreviations seem endless. As the current school year comes toward a close, and summer quickly approaches, ESY will be my focus. Extended school year is often referred to as ESY, but commonly thought of as summer school.

Extended school year services, when determined necessary by a student’s individualized educational program (IEP) team, are one of the requirements of a free appropriate public education (FAPE). The Nebraska Department of Education Rule 51*, defines extended school year services as, “Extended school year services means special education and related services that: are provided to a child with a disability, beyond the normal school year of the school district or approved cooperative, in accordance with the child's IEP, at no cost to the parents of the child, and meet the requirements of 92 NAC 51.”

When my daughter was in elementary school, she benefitted from the extended school year services that were provided for her during the summer. Those services helped her retain the skills and curriculum she had learned throughout the previous school year. This additional instruction time also helped ensure that she didn’t regress before the next school year.

It’s important to know that extended school year services aren’t appropriate or necessary for every student with a disability. However, they are an element of every individualized educational program and should be determined on an individualized basis for each eligible student. If you would like more information about extended school year services, Disability Rights Nebraska has a great resource in their Law-in-Brief Information Series, and you can find it by clicking on this link:

*For more information on Nebraska's Rule 51, click this link:
Karen Masterson has been a Case Advocate at Disability Rights Nebraska for over two years. Karen earned an Associate of Applied Science degree in Business Administration at Southeast Community College. In her leisure time she enjoys photography, fashion, travel, and culinary adventures.

Image by Kimberly Farmer from Unsplash.