NYC special education recovery services program to be scaled back this fall – Chalkbeat New York

by | Jul 29, 2022 | Education

In response to pandemic disruptions, New York City officials required every school to offer special education services last year outside regular hours to any family who wanted them.But that won’t be the case this coming school year, education officials said. Instead, the education department is vowing to determine what extra instruction or therapies children may need on an “individual basis” — decisions that will be left to the teams that set students’ individualized education programs, also known as IEPs.Extra small group instruction or “related services” such as physical and occupational therapy, may be provided after school, on Saturdays, during the school day, or through a voucher for students the city determines need extra help, officials said. The city is also expanding a new program for students with significant sensory issues, which has been popular with some parents. It will launch at 70 sites this fall, up from 10.The education department is setting aside $100 million for those extra services, down from roughly $200 million last year, according to city officials. Last year’s recovery program was delayed for months after the school year started. Schools struggled to attract staff to work the extra hours and the vast majority of students did not participate, though officials have yet to provide a final tally. The program earned mixed reviews from parents and educators.

There are many unanswered questions about how this year’s program will operate, including which students will be eligible, when parents will be informed of how they can access extra services, who will be responsible for providing them, and even when they’ll begin. City officials did not say if they will provide yellow bus service for programs that will be provided outside of the regular scho …

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