Extended School Year ESY: Why It Is Important Now!

Our weather is getting warmer and the days are getting longer. The summer is here again. Most of us feel excited about hearing summer because of the planned vacation or to have a memorable summer once again.

However, you can use this opportunity to enroll your ward in the special education program which is called ESY (Extended School Year).

Extended school year (ESY), as many parents or schools refer to as public school programs that run for a certain number of weeks during July and August, for certain children with IEPs (Individual Education Program team).

This service (ESY) is a good one because it is a special education that provides the student in maintaining the skills at risk of regression or take too long to recoup what is lost after a break.

So, read the article to the end to know more about the Extended School Year (ESY) and why it is important.

Meanwhile, before we continue, you can go through the table of content below for an overview of what to expect in this article.

What Is ESY (Extended School Year)?

Extended school year (ESY) services are special education and special services that are designed to support a student with a disability beyond the regular school year in accordance with his/her IEP.

The Individual Education Program (IEP) team determines the need for ESY services annually on an individual basis.

The services are to help each child maintain his skills and not lose the progress he’s made toward his goals. For some kids, this may mean one-on-one tutoring.

While for others it may be a few sessions of occupational therapy or speech therapy each week. What ESY looks like for your child is a decision by his IEP team.

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Note that the mandatory age at which a student must be included varies by State but the Federal law states no later than age 16.

When Was The School Year Extended (ESY) In The United States Education Reform 19th Century?

The history of education in the United States covers the trends in educational formal and informal learning in America from the 17th century to the early 21st century.

The public school system is a vital part of the American landscape, an institution that a lot of people take for granted.

It’s hard to know that there was a time in history when education was a privilege, not a right, a time when only the children of the wealthy receive an education.

But as recently as the mid-1800s in the United States, they consider the idea of free, publicly support education for all children to be extremely radical.

This was because of the efforts of nineteenth-century reformers such as Horace Mann (1796–1859), the public school system became a reality.

Although the American public school system is far from perfect and undergoes nearly continuous reform, it remains one of the great democratic institutions of the nation. It holds the promise of equal educational opportunity for all children.

Read this: What is Finishing School? How it Works | Locations

Why Is Extended School Year (ESY) Important Now?

Extended School Year (ESY) services are special education and related services provided to students with disabilities beyond the 180-day school year.

Some students with special needs are in jeopardy of not being able to retain the skills they have learned during the school year unless given additional support throughout the summer.

Those students eligible for ESY will receive an individualized program to support their learning and retention of skills throughout the summer holidays.

So, the reason why ESY is important is that some eligible students will either regress too much during the break or take too long to recoup what is lost after a break.

Who Is Eligible For ESY?

  • In many states, kids with learning and attention issues are unlikely to get ESY services. But it’s important to check with your state’s department of education. It can tell you what the standards are where you live.
  • ESY isn’t sure for all students who have IEPs. (And not all kids with IEPs need it.) The Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act lets each state or school district set its own rules for eligibility. So the standards vary from place to place.
  • IDEA does say that schools can’t limit ESY services to kids with certain issues. For example, a school can’t decide to not give services to kids with dysgraphia. It also can’t give services only to kids with autism spectrum disorder, for instance.
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How Can I Determine If A Child Qualifies For ESY Services?

You can determine if a child needs ESY services in the school through the IEP team. They will decide if the child will qualify for ESY Services. The decision will be based on a variety of factors which include:

  • The child’s behavioral and/or physical problems
  • The child’s rate of progress
  • Availability of resources
  • The vocational and transitional needs of the child
  • The child’s ability to interact with non-disabled children
  • Also, whether the service requested is ‘extraordinary’ rather than usual in consideration of the child’s condition.
  • The degree of impairment

Note that the key to know if a child qualifies is  the child’s regression during school breaks, these should be well documented and records or any supporting data should be on hand for the team meeting.

The school team will look at previous regression. It is important to note that most students don’t retain all skills taught, hence a spiraling curriculum.

The degree of regression must be relatively extreme to qualify for ESY Services.

Five Top Secret About Extended School Year (ESY)

For starter, these five secrets is what every parent should know about in order to obtain ESY. Therefore, here are the top 5 Secrets about Extended School Year.

  •  ESY is not only for children who are failing or who didn’t meet their stated IEP goals.
  • Recoupment/regression analysis is not the only way to qualify for ESY.
  • ESY programs are not one-size-fits-all.
  • ESY need not be in school.
  • Parents need to pave the way by collecting data year-round.

For more information about the top secret you can click on this link

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Reasons Why School Year Should Be Extended

Here are some reasons why school year should be longer

#1. There will be no more summer slide

The summer slide is a term that is use to describe the time in the summer where many children “lose” the knowledge gained throughout the school year.

#2. Better Pay For Teachers

This can be a positive or a negative depending on the side of the fence you sit, but longer school years generally mean more money going into teacher’s pockets. 

#3. More time for families

Increased family time has shown to be beneficial to a child’s mental and emotional stability, so more time during the day could help to encourage that time together.

#4. Better academic achievement

When children have longer school years, they could experience fewer effects from the summer slide thereby being able to explore topics more thoroughly and continue on with their education versus spending time reviewing topics already covered.

#5. More time for kids to be kids

A solid reason for longer years (and shorter days) is the extra time each day children will have to do the things that children do best- play.

Even though it is free-play at home or with friends or organized activities in the community, the important thing is that active play is essential to a child’s mental, emotional, and physical health.


In the United States, Extended School Year (ESY) services are designed to support a student with a disability to maintain the academic, social/behavioral, communication, or other skills that they have learned during g the school year.

– To qualify a child with a disability must lose two-thirds of the skills they learned during the school year (usually based upon progress toward IEP goals), and take between six and nine weeks of the next school year to regain those skills
– The child’s behavioral and/or physical problems. 
– Availability of resources, etc.

Yes it is.
1. With an extended school year, less time would be lost reviewing materials at the beginning of the year, and more new learning can occur.
2. Less time is spent teaching and re-teaching routines.
3. Also, it takes students less time to get “in the swing” of going back to school with shorter breaks.

The reason why ESY is important is that some eligible students will either regress too much during the break or take too long to recoup what is lost after a break.


If you think your child may lose academic skills over the summer, you can go for ESY. But if your child doesn’t get ESY, you can help him keep learning throughout the summer.

In addition, I believe the article gives you the best understanding you need about Extended School Year (ESY).



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