Exceptional Student Services

Exceptional Student Services Programs

See below for some of the ESS Programs

Adapted Physical Education is physical education which has been adapted or modified, so that it is as appropriate for the person with a disability as it  is  for a person without a disability. The APE teacher is a direct service provider, not a related service provider, because physical education for children with disabilities is a federally mandated component of special education services.
Federal law mandates that physical education be provided to students with disabilities and defines Physical Education as the development of:
  • physical and motor skills
  • fundamental motor skills and patterns (throwing, catching, walking, running, etc.)
  • skills in aquatics, dance, and individual and group games and sports
    (including intramural and lifetime sports)
The services provided by an APE teacher include:
  •  Planning services
  • Assessment of Individuals /Ecosystems
  • Prescription/Placement: The IEP
  • Teaching/Counseling/Coaching
  • Evaluation of Services
  • Coordination of Resources and Consulting
  • Advocacy

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) identifies Assistive Technology into two broad categories: Assistive Technology Devices and Assistive Technology Services.  An Assistive Technology Device is “any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.  An Assistive Technology Service is “any service that directly assists a child with a disability in the selection, acquisition, or use of an assistive technology device.”  AT technical services include, but are not limited to evaluation, acquisition, modification/customization, training, and technical support.

AT assessments are conducted by the multidisciplinary Assistive Technology Team composed of an Assistive Technology Program Specialist, Speech Pathologists and Occupational Therapists.  Exceptional Services students (or students being evaluated for Exceptional Student Services) with significant limitations in written or verbal communication, seating or positioning, computer access and computer based instruction in reading and math should be referred when standard modifications/accommodations have not been successful.

Accessible Educational Materials   (AEM)

Accessible Educational Materials, or AEM, are materials and technologies usable for learning across the widest range of individual variability, regardless of format or features. Whether a material or technology is designed from the start to be accessible for all learners or is made accessible for learners with disabilities, it is considered AEM.

Many materials used by students in the classroom are print-based, such as textbooks and hand-outs. Some students with physical, sensory, or intellectual challenges may have difficulty reading these materials. To bridge this gap, AEM provides the same information found in print-based materials. These materials are presented in formats that students with disabilities can use. Examples of formats that are used to make the information in printed materials accessible are Braille, large print, audio, and digital text.

EBR Parish School System Exceptional Student Services Assistive Technology Equipment, Technical Support, and Training Request Form

The East Baton Rouge Parish School System Exceptional Student Services
Autism Program is designed to meet the unique needs of students on the
Pervasive  Developmental Disorder Spectrum relative to:
  • communication
  • social
  • sensory
  • behavior
  • cognition
Students address the academic and extended standards but with modified/adapted materials and are provided the appropriate rate of instruction so that the pace and rigor of the subject matter matches the skill level of the student.
The Significant Disabilities Program is designed to meet the unique cognitive and medical needs of identified students utilizing adapted/modified materials.  Identified students address alternate assessment and extended standards.
The Community-based Program addresses academics and give students opportunities to learn and practice pre-vocational (middle school), vocational (high school) and recreational/leisure skills in the community. Participation allows for success in post-secondary activities.

The Behavior Program is comprised of a team of behavioral strategists who promote effective, positive
behavioral changes in students by providing research-based strategies and interventions to students and
schools. The team conducts professional development in classroom management techniques, crisis
prevention and other related topics for the sole purpose of developing skills, replacement behaviors, and
establishing effective relationships with emotional and at-risk students. Being proactive, behavioral
strategists consult with teachers, school administrators, and staff to establish preventative, approaches to
address problematic behaviors.

Child Search is a special education service provided for identifying children from ages three through twenty-one who are suspected of having an educational disability and who may be eligible for special education and related services.
What is included in the definition of educational disability?
Federal and state laws identify specific disabling conditions that entitle a child to special education service if it is determined that the disability is interfering with the child’s learning.
These conditions, called educational disabilities, include:
  • Autism
  • Developmental Delay
  • Emotional Disturbance
  • Hearing Impairment
  • Intellectual Disability
  • Multiple Disabilities
  • Orthopedic Impairment
  • Other Health Impairment
  • Specific Learning Disability
  • Speech or Language Impairment
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Visual Impairment (including Blindness)
Who is eligible for Child Search?
  • Preschool children residing in East Baton Rouge Parish who are not enrolled in a preschool program.
  • Children ages 3-21 attending an MSDE approved private/parochial school located in East Baton Rouge Parish, regardless of residency.
Who may refer a child?
  • Most referrals are made directly by a child’s parents.
  • Referrals (with parental consent) are made by health care providers, social workers, child care providers, and other individuals familiar with the child’s needs.
What services are available?
  • Services for eligible preschool children, who are also East Baton Rouge Parish residents, may include classroom instruction, speech/language therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and audiological services.
  • Services for eligible preschool children who are NOT East Baton Rouge Parish residents are subject to the current Notice of Services for parentally placed private/parochial students.
  • Services for all eligible children in grades K-12 are subject to the current Notice of Services for parentally placed private/parochial students.

Extended School Year (ESY) services are the provision of special education and related services to students with disabilities beyond the normal school year of the LEA in accordance with an IEP and at no cost to the parents of the student. Extended School Year Services are to be an extension of the regular school year program for students who have been determined to need these services to ensure the provision of FAPE.

All students with disabilities ages 3-21 (with a current evaluation and current IEP) must be screened for ESY using one or more of the ESY screening criteria. Eligibility for ESY is based on the data collection results on your selected criteria. Screening criteria selection is based on student need(s). You are required to select any criteria that apply to the student and his/her needs. This decision is made by the IEP committee at the time of the IEP meeting.

Three criteria are used to determine a student’s need for ESY services:

  • Regression-Recoupment
  • Critical Point of Instruction and
  • Special Circumstances

1) Regression-Recoupment – This criterion shall be applied to all students with significant cognitive disabilities or functions-like a student with significant cognitive disabilities at all age and grade levels, including preschool aged students.

2) Critical Point of Instruction (CPI) Criterion. This criterion shall be considered for ALL students.

3) Special Circumstances (SC) Criterion – Employment-Students ages 16-21 shall be considered for ESY services when there is documentation (i.e., job performance data) that the student is in need of support to maintain paid employment.

4) Transition from Early Steps to Part B (Preschool) – Students transitioning from Early Steps to  Part B preschool services  who have spring/summer birthday shall be considered  for ESY services.

5) Transition to Post-school Outcomes – Students who have a transition plan and who are expected to exit the LEA at the end of the school year shall be considered for ESY services. The  teacher/instructional personnel shall examine the documentation of the incomplete action steps and corresponding goals that are the responsibility of the LEA.

6)  Excessive Absences – A student with a disability who has documented  absences during the school year, in excess of 25 days, for health-related conditions without the provision of hospital/homebound services and who has failed to make projected progress shall be considered for ESY services.

7)  Extenuating Circumstances – There may be unusual situations or circumstances when ESY services may be needed, but the student does not meet any of the eligibility criteria.

The Gifted Program is an educational program for students identified as gifted in grades PreK–12 and enrolled in the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. Classes provide a high degree of complexity and extend beyond the prescribed curriculum offered in regular classes. Classes are taught by teachers certified in Gifted Education and have a reduced class size in order to individualize each student’s educational program.

The Talented Arts Program is an educational program for students identified as talented in visual arts, music or theater in grades K – 12 and enrolled in the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. Classes provided in these disciplines are designed to provide experiences that enable the talented student to further develop demonstrated skills, increase discipline knowledge, and grow as an artist.

For more information visit the Gifted & Talented page.

Hearing Impaired

East Baton Rouge Parish School System through the Exceptional Student Services Department provides comprehensive services for students who are Hearing Impaired. Students who have a loss of hearing which interferes with the ability to perform academically and who meet the criteria of Bulletin 1706 qualify for services. Those students may require accommodations in the classroom, interpreters, techniques, materials and/or equipment in order to be successful in the academic setting.

Students may receive services in settings ranging from consultation with regular and special education classroom teachers to special classes in a regular school setting. Placement is determined in the IEP committee. A “cluster” concept has been initiated for students who require daily services of a teacher of the hearing impaired. This concept of clustering at one site facilitates daily resource instruction to students and provides for continued utilization of experienced regular classroom teachers from year to year.

The parish provides hearing impaired students with audiological services, classroom FM systems, interpreters, and other technology to ensure success.


Comprehensive services for students who are identified as Visually Impaired are provided by the Exceptional Student Services Department of the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. Students who have a loss or vision which interferes with the ability to perform academically and who meet the criteria of Bulletin 1706 qualify for services. Those students may require the use of specialized textbooks, techniques, materials and/or equipment for success in the academic environment.

Students may receive services in settings ranging from consultation with regular and special education classroom teachers to special classes in a regular school setting. Placement is determined in the IEP committee. A “cluster” concept has been initiated for students who require daily services of a teacher of the visually impaired. This concept of clustering at one site facilitates daily resource instruction to students and provides for continued utilization of experienced regular classroom teachers from year to year.

The parish provides low vision aids, Braille instruction, transcription services, Orientation & Mobility, and both hardware and software technology specific to visually impaired students.

Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy is provided to all students identified by a multidisciplinary team as disabled and in need of OT services. This service may involve removing the student from the classroom to work individually within an environment that is set up to encourage progress toward specified goals.

Additionally, occupational therapists work with a child’s teacher, classroom aide and others that have contact with him/her on a daily basis. The therapist is familiar with the details of the child’s needs based on the results of the evaluation and goals established in the Individualized Education Program (IEP) and will work with the teacher to suggest training / teaching strategies, therapeutic activities, modifications to teaching materials, classroom set up, structure or teaching methods to help him/her reach goals established by the educational team.

Physical Therapy

Physical Therapy is provided by physical therapists in the East Baton Rouge School System that work with other professionals to help students with disabilities to benefit from special education. This includes activities of a school day (i.e., moving throughout school grounds, sitting, standing in line or at the board, moving in class or through the building). All screenings, evaluations, consultations, and interventions are performed by physical therapists licensed by the state of Louisiana. Interventions may include adaptations to school environments, working with a student on motor skills, assistance with identifying and getting special equipment, and collaboration with school staff and other professionals.

Orientation and Mobility Training is a program for students who are blind or visually impaired that are trained to travel independently within the school environment and the community at large, as appropriate to student needs. This program’s main purpose is to ensure that Visually Impaired students use the senses in determining their position in relationship to surroundings and moving from a fixed position to a desired position within the environment.

Under IDEA “eligible” children with disabilities, ages 3-21, are entitled to receive a free and appropriate public education (FAPE).  The public school program for young children, ages 3-5, is called the Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD).

The Exceptional Student Services Preschool Program is a free service of the EBR Public School System.  Our program is designed to serve disabled students ages three to six years old.  This program offers opportunities for activities and routines, curriculum, and planning that are research-based, developmentally-appropriate, and address the Early Childhood Standards regarding the following areas of growth:

  • Language and Communication
  • Self-help skills
  • Social interactions, coping skills, and  self-regulation skills
  • Safety  issues
  • Pre-academic skills
  • Gross motor development
  • Fine motor development

Pupil Appraisal Services provide the provision of services to students who have academic, behavioral, and/or communication challenges or other special needs which adversely impact the student’s educational performance. Services are provided to students, parents, teachers, and other school personnel.

Service delivery includes:

  • assistance to teachers and other school personnel in the development and implementation of behavioral and/or instructional interventions through the district’s Response to Intervention (RTI) process
  • provision of support services to non-disabled students with academic, behavioral, and/or communication difficulties
  • consultation with parents, students, teachers and other personnel on related topics
  • provision of staff development to school personnel
  • evaluation of students to determine whether they are exceptional and in need of a specialized educational program and/or related services according to LDOE Pupil Appraisal Bulletin 1508.
  • referral to other outside appropriate agencies when warranted

Licensed and/or Certified members of the multidisciplinary team  composition in East Baton Rouge Parish include:

  • Educational Diagnosticians
  • School Psychologists
  • School Social Workers
  • Speech/Language Pathologists
  • Audiologists
  • Adapted P. E. Specialists
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physical Therapists
  • School Nurses
  • Assistive Technology Specialists
  • Interpreters
  • Orientation and Mobility Specialists
  • Visually Impaired Specialist

Speech Language Pathology “The Core of Common Core”

It is the mission of the Speech-Language Therapy Program to secure the highest quality personnel, resources, and materials in order to provide the highest quality of services to students with communication impairments. The Speech-Language Therapy program provides a continuum of services for communication-impaired students, including early identification, evaluation, therapy, and consultation. Speech therapy services are provided when it is documented that the student needs services to benefit from the educational program. These services are collaborative and focus on skills that promote attainment of educational objectives. Service delivery models may vary according to the needs of the student, and may include direct, consultative, and tracking/monitoring. Frequency of services is based on the student’s needs. Speech, hearing, and language services are provided for students identified according to the guidelines of the Louisiana Pupil Appraisal Bulletin 1508. Services are provided for students ages 3-21 enrolled in the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. We also provide therapy for non-public speech-impaired students in a non-public setting according to the school accreditation.


Communication disorders may be exhibited by an impairment in any one or combination of the following:

  • Articulation
  • Language
  • Voice
  • Fluency

Transition services are a coordinated set of activities for students with disabilities designed to improve academic and functional achievement and to facilitate the student’s transition to postsecondary life. Transition activities cover areas of Instruction/ Related Service, Community Experiences, Employment, Post school Adult Living, Functional Vocational Evaluation, and Daily Living Skills. These activities are geared towards the student’s postsecondary goals in the areas of training or education, employment, and independent living  (if applicable). In the East Baton Rouge Parish School System, Transition services are addressed for students with disabilities who are 15 years of age or older.

EBRPSS’ Transition Standards:

To maximize postsecondary outcomes, the East Baton Rouge Parish Schools System ensures the following:

  1. Postsecondary goals addressing education or training, employment, and independent living (as needed) are measurable and realistic.
  2. Age-appropriate transition assessments are used to design measurable postsecondary goals.
  3. Transition services/ activities in the IEP are specific, coordinated, and are geared towards meeting every post-secondary goal.
  4. Each Individual Graduation Plan (IGP) is updated and is aligned with the student’s postsecondary goals.
  5. There are IEP goals that are related to transition service needs.
  6. The student and the parent are invited to the IEP team meeting where Transition planning is done.
  7. Transition agency is invited to participate in the meeting if consent is obtained from the parent or age-of-majority student.
  8. Transition activities on the IEP are being carried out in a timely manner within the IEP year.
  9. Districtwide Transition activities are made available to the members of the IEP team to strengthen Transition planning and increase employment outcomes.
  10. Parents are given multiple opportunities to receive information related to Transition opportunities, activities, and linkages.
  11. Linkages and partnerships are strengthened among the agencies and local businesses in the community to increase college, career, and employment opportunities.
  12. Regular and close collaboration of the Exceptional Student Services Department with Guidance and Counseling Department, Career and Technical Education Department, and other departments within the district are being maintained to maximize student opportunities for college, career, and employment.

EBRPSS’ Transition Resources and Opportunities:

  1. Interest and Aptitude Assessment(Career Scope Interest Inventory) – a standardized interest and aptitude assessment that is used for Transition planning. The data allow the teachers and IEP teams to guide students toward postsecondary goals.
  2. Work Keys Curriculum– a curriculum used to help prepare the students to score at least a “Silver” for the Work Keys Exam required for students who are on Jump Start pathway. A score of “Silver” is equivalent to a credential.
  3. Career Ready 101– a set of curricula on workplace skills, soft skills, financial awareness and other career and employment skills that are used to prepare students for employment.
  4. Job Readiness Classes (through LRS’ Pre-ETS) – address work readiness skills including soft skills and work-based learning.
  5. Vocational Training– provide students with significant disabilities an opportunity to apply vocational skills in worksites within the community.
  6. Functional and Recreational Outings– allow students with significant disabilities an opportunity to apply daily and independent living skills in the community.
  7. Transition Fair– connects parents to Transition agencies that provide programs appropriate to the needs of their children. It also provides students opportunities to showcase their products (related to Transition) to participating parents. It is held in March, the district’s Transition Month.
  8. Job and Career Exploration– provides students an opportunity to visit post-secondary institutions (such as worksite and colleges and universities) for career exploration and planning. It is held in March, the district’s Transition Month.
  9. Student Diversity Job Fair– an opportunity for an actual interview, applying the skills and lessons learned in the classroom and a possibility of getting hired by local businesses and agencies. It is done in March, the district’s Transition Month.
  10. Graduation Pathways Support– training, resources, and guidance provided to schools and IEP teams to effectively plan for students who are pursuing the JumpStart, Alternative Pathway/ Act 833, and the Career Diploma (Leap Connect).


Informational Resources:

Documents to be attached: (Coming soon)

  • Transition Fact Sheet
  • Community- based Brochure
  • Transition Brochure
  • Jump Start Brochure
  • Transition Guide for Educators

Transition and Vocational Training Partners:

  • Louisiana Rehabilitation Services
  • The Arc of Baton Rouge
  • Canes River Center
  • LSU
  • Hampton Inn
  • Family Dollar
  • Purple Cow
  • Winn Dixie
  • Shoppers Value
  • Goodwill
  • LA Horticulture Department
  • Hi Nabor
  • St. Vincent de Paul
  • East Baton Rouge Parish Library
  • EBRPSS Exceptional Student Services Department
  • EBRPSS Central Office

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