When I was growing up, I thought summer school was only for children who didn't do well academically. Now that I have a child with special needs, I'm learning that summer school can mean very different things. Evie just finished her second day of summer school. To her, we go in a different entrance and there are new teachers and new classmates. But as soon as she saw her new classroom, she went right for the blocks, and I knew she would be just fine. If a child has an IEP, it's not an automatic thing that they will qualify to have Extended School Year (ESY) services. It has to be apparent that the child will regress without school, or take a long time to relearn certain skills due to lack of school during the summer. Some kids qualify for therapy sessions during the summer, and others, like Evie qualify to go to the summer school program for 1 month. There was no question that Evie qualified for ESY when the IEP was first written--I didn't have to fight
While sharing our journey with Down Syndrome, we want to help other parents with our experiences, as well as spread awareness about what it means to have Down Syndrome (spoiler: it means great things!).