July 2021 —
The MLO Minute: By Nancy Potter, Esq. and Kimberly Caputo, Esq. Special Education Attorneys with McAndrews, Mehalick, Connolly, Hulse and Ryan P.C. —
Governor Wolf has Signed Act 66 of 2021! Attention Parents, Guardians, and Caregivers! Extra year for 21-Year-Old Students with IEPs & Option to Repeat a Grade for ALL Students!
As we have been advising, PA parents have an opportunity to elect to have their school aged child repeat a grade in September 2021. This applies to all students regardless of whether they have an IEP. This is being referred to as ACT 66 by the Pennsylvania Department of Education (“PDE”). In addition, students with IEPS who are now 21 and would otherwise be “exited” from service due to age, can elect to return to school for full IEP services in September 2021.
If either option is right for the student, a parent MUST complete a Pennsylvania Department of Education form. Click here to download the form:
The form is also available on the PDE website: https://www.education.pa.gov/Schools/safeschools/emergencyplanning/COVID-19/SchoolReopeningGuidance/ReopeningPreKto12/Pages/Student-Grade-Level-Retainment-(Act-66).aspx
Because educational “rights” in PA shift at age 21, if this choice is being made, the form should be signed by the student (if possible), as well as the parent.
THIS FORM MUST BE SUBMITTED TO YOUR SCHOOL DISTRICT NO LATER THAN JULY 15, 2021! DO NOT SUBMIT TO PDE.
We strongly suggest you submit by email so you have a record that you met the July 15th deadline. Some Districts have information about Act 66; however, we have not seen consistency across all District websites. We urge you to review the form and if the options are choices for your student, follow your district’s directions and if nothing is posted, complete the form and send it (via email) to the Principal of the building your child last attended. Retention or returning to school at age 21 are big decisions involving many factors. We are here to help! Click here to contact us today!