Guide to ESY


Faribault Public Schools
Guide to Extended School Year


Extended School Year (ESY) is an extension of special education services to students with disabilities whose Individual Education Program (IEP) indicates that they qualify and are in need of those services over the summer months or during other periods of extended breaks in instruction. Although the specific reason(s) for providing ESY varies from student to student, the need arises when it is determined that the student:  1) requires a significant amount of time to recoup a previously acquired skill or knowledge following an extended break from instruction and/or services;  2) or the pupil is at a critical learning period and that interrupting instruction and/or services would severely jeopardize the student's ability to benefit from their specialized instruction; or 3) the break will prevent a student who is in a functional curriculum form attaining or maintaining self-sufficiency skills that allow for personal independence.        

Regression – All students, disabled and non-disabled alike, experience regression during breaks in instruction. For purposes of ESY determination, regression is a decline in the performance of a skill or acquired knowledge as specified in the annual goals in the student's IEP that occurs during a break in instruction. That is, ESY applies only to annual goals in the student's current IEP.

Recoupment – A student's ability to regain the skill performance or relearn the acquired knowledge to approximately the same level that existed just prior to the break in instruction.

Significant – Regression/recoupment is significant when the recoupment period is longer than the length of the break in instruction, unless the IEP team determines a shorter time for recoupment is more appropriate. For example, to be considered significant, the time needed to recoup/relearn a skill in the fall would need to be greater than three months - the length of the summer break.

Self Sufficiency - Those functional skills necessary for a student to achieve a reasonable degree of personal independence as identified in the annual IEP goals for a student requiring a functional curriculum.  Self-sufficiency goals include such areas as: toileting, eating, dressing, muscular control, personal mobility, impulse control, maintaining stable relationships with peers and adults, basic communication skills and functional academic competency.  A student must have functional goals and participate in a functional curriculum.


ESY is not summer school, summer camp or other such programs districts choose to offer. Such programs are permissive and are offered at the option of district boards. Furthermore, summer school is not a substitute for ESY. Students who participate in summer programs may also qualify for ESY during the gaps in general education programming.

While ESY services would undoubtedly benefit most learners with or without disabilities, criteria for eligibility are not met simply because the child would derive benefit.  ESY is not mandated for all learners with disabilities.  It is not meant to replace permissive summer school, or to provide summer activities for students. It is not intended to maximize educational benefit, but to MAINTAIN skills.

The eligibility and need for ESY services is determined annually by the student’s IEP Team.

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