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Summer supports available for students with mental health needs, special education needs

June 19, 2020


The Upper Grand District School Board is offering a number of supports for students and families throughout the summer months.

Summer supports and courses for students are available, including mental health supports, courses for students with Autism, and transition supports for students with complex special education needs or mental health needs.

Summer Mental Health Supports

This summer, the UGDSB will be providing continuity of care for students with significant mental health needs. Our mental health support staff will be providing individual virtual support to students currently on caseload with our staff and who would benefit from regular mental health support over the summer. Students who are struggling with significant mental health needs over the summer can also be referred to our mental health staff for support. If the student is enrolled in the board’s summer learning programs, we encourage initial contact with their teacher/administrator.  Students experiencing significant mental health needs who are not in summer learning can access support by calling 519-822-4420 extension 588. This number will be monitored daily and someone will respond within 24 hours to set up support.

Summer Programs: Supports for Students with Autism

The UGDSB is offering a variety of courses this summer to support students in our board who have a diagnosis of Autism and their families. These courses are all being offered ONLINE during the summer months.  Each of these courses has live lessons with online resources followed by activities for participants to complete offline.  Support will be available to families who would benefit from additional technology to enable participants to engage in online learning over the summer. We are hoping to run all of these courses, however, this will be dependent on the number of participants who register.

If families would like to learn more about the summer course offerings for students with Autism, please visit the board website for the course outline and registration information or click on the following link: Summer Programs: Supports for Students with Autism

Please note that the deadline to apply to all but one of these courses (the PEERS Program) is July 3, 2020. The deadline to apply to the PEERS program is June 26, 2020, at 4 p.m.

High Risk Transition Supports

The board will be providing funds to support both individual and small group transitional support for students with complex special education needs and students who have significant mental health needs, K-12. This summer program is intended to be live, in person, and as such, the viability of this program will depend on the status of Ontario and Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph orders and restrictions.

Transition planning will be done in collaboration with board staff, school staff, parents/guardians and community partners, where appropriate.  Transitions will be taking place in the last two weeks of August. They are intended to support our most at risk youth (K-12) who would benefit from additional special education and mental health support prior to the beginning of the school year, as a way of improving a student’s successful return to school.

Returning to school after the unique school closure we have experienced can be stressful for many of our students.  School teams will be working together to ensure students are able to feel comfortable and considered in their return to school with this in mind.  As a parent or guardian, if you are concerned about the well-being of your child and their transition back to school in September, it is important to reach out to your current classroom teacher (prior to end of June) or the school principal to discuss your concerns so that together you can determine the most appropriate supports (i.e. this program or other school supports available) to help your child transition to their new school environment.

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