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Alternative Education for Disruptive Youth (AEDY) Program
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Program Content

Q. Are Health and Life Skills required at every grade level?

A. PDE AEDY guidelines require either a health or life skills component to be part of each program’s design at every grade level.

Q: Do AEDY programs have to be “brick and mortar” (physical building structures) or can they participate in online learning with counselors physically present and certified teachers online?

A: The Department encourages AEDY programs in which students will have ample face-to-face interaction with teachers, counselors, and peers. Such programs will help students change behaviors which caused them to be removed from the regular classroom and accomplish the AEDY law’s objectives. Online instruction can serve to supplement and reinforce academic content but should not be the total instructional program.

Although online instruction is allowed as described above students must participate in this type of instruction in a classroom setting and not from home. There is no provision in Article XIX-C for homebound Alternative Education for Disruptive Youth programs.


Q. Are all teachers in AEDY programs required to be “highly qualified” in their content areas?

A. AEDY teachers in public schools who provide direct instruction in one or more core content areas must meet the highly qualified teacher requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act. These requirements do not apply to private AEDY providers.


Q: Can the required counseling component be a combination of group counseling and individual counseling?

A: Yes, a combination is recommended. Goals that reflect how group and individual counseling are used as interventions to meet each student’s specific needs should be written into the student’s behavior plan.

Q: Is the career counseling a part of the 2.5?

A. No, career counseling can be a valuable component of AEDY but it is does not satisfy the behavioral counseling requirement.

Q. Is classroom-based behavior modification instruction considered counseling for the purposes of this requirement?

A. No. Counseling should be targeted to address the individual behaviors that led to each student’s placement in an AEDY program.

Q: Could you provide us with some samples of what is acceptable for the counseling component?

A: There are samples listed in the 2009-2010 AEDY Guidelines. These can be found at the link below.

2011-2013 AEDY Guidelines (PDF)


Q: I am the parent of a child who needs help. How do I enroll my child in an Alternative Education for Disruptive Youth program?

A: Parents do not directly enroll their children in AEDY programs. Only a school district, intermediate unit, eligible charter school, or career and technical center can refer a student to an AEDY program. If you think your child may benefit from a different type of school program, please contact your child’s school principal.

Q. In some cases, parents want their children to stay for an extended time in an AEDY placement. How should this be addressed?

A. AEDY programs are designed to be temporary placements. Periodic reviews should be used to evaluate a student’s progress on academic and behavioral goals and to determine whether continued participation is warranted. Parents should be encouraged to participate in the review process and make their wishes known, but the goal of AEDY is to return students to the regular classroom.

Q. Is placement in an AEDY program appropriate for students returning from suspension or expulsion or transferring from another AEDY program?

A. Only if the student meets the statutory criteria for AEDY placement as outlined in 24 PS 19-1901-C(5)i-vii. All students are entitled to an informal hearing to determine whether they meet the criteria at the time of a proposed placement , as set forth in 22 Pa. Code § 12.8(c).

Q. Is it appropriate for a student returning from a mental health placement to be referred to an AEDY placement?

A. Only if the student meets the statutory criteria for AEDY placement as outlined in 24 PS 19-1901-C(5)i-vii. All students are entitled to an informal hearing to determine whether they meet the criteria at the time of a proposed placement , as set forth in 22 Pa. Code § 12.8(c).

Q. If the district runs an alternative program (other than for disruptive youth) with no requests for funds from PDE - does the alternative program still have to meet the requirements you are discussing here?

A. No. However, all AEDY programs require PDE approval.

Q. Prior to placement in an Alternative Education for Disruptive Youth program, are all students entitled to an informal hearing?

A. Yes, all students recommended for AEDY placement are entitled to a hearing by statute. Notice of hearing must precede placement in the program. Please see 22Pa Code §12.18c (relating to hearings).

Q. Should the Intake Form be shared with regular education teachers?

A. No, the form should not be shared with regular education teachers unless the teachers have been determined by school officials to have a legitimate educational interest as prescribed by FERPA.

Data Collection

Q: For data reporting purposes, how should AEDY programs determine “Average Daily Attendance?”

A: Average Daily Attendance should be calculated by taking the daily attendance of your student population by grade level (# of students you have in school that day by grade level) and dividing by the daily membership (# of students your AEDY program serves by grade level, even if they are absent that day).

Q: How should an AEDY program calculate Average Daily Attendance in cases where students in the program come from different districts, with different baselines for required number of days of attendance?

A: Average Daily Attendance for your AEDY program should be calculated using the above formula. If districts require you to report attendance separately for their students, you must also keep that information for them as per your agreement with them and report it to them in the manner they require.

Q: How should programs account for student length of stay during summer months, vacations and half months?

A: Only months during which a program operates (students are in attendance) should be counted.

Q: How should partial months of stay be entered?

A: Partial months should be entered into the column that is closest to the rounded number. For example, if a student has been in your program 19.5 months, that child should be entered into the 19-24 month column.

Grant Application

Q: Is it possible to attach documents to the web-based template on E-grants?

A: The eGrant system does not accept the attachments. All data required must be entered in template fields.

Q. If this program is a re-application for approval, and the required consultations/meetings occurred prior to the initial program approval, do these consultations/meetings need to be held again or can we reference the original consultations in the eGrant application?

A. Yes, meetings must be held again. Collaboration between all stakeholders to determine AEDY program effectiveness should be on-going.

Q. If we choose to use an approved private provider do we have to complete the program description portion of the application?

A. Yes. LEAs must describe the program and services offered by the private provider. If an LEA utilizes more than one provider there must be a program description submitted for each one.

Q. If a school district has an in-house program and contracts with a private provider is that considered a Consortium?

A. No. That is a school district with two programs.

Q. We contract with a private provider who has two locations. Should each location be listed as a separate program?

A. Yes, you must enter both locations if students from your district are enrolled in both programs.


Q: Do AEDY programs that offer school lunch programs have to offer free/reduced lunch to those students who meet federal qualifications?

A: Yes, if they participate in the National School Lunch Program.

Q. If we run a twilight program, and after school activities are cancelled due to inclement weather, will considerations be made to allow less than 720 hours of instruction?

A. AEDY Programs are the responsibility of school districts and operate under the same rules as the district for weather cancellations or other situations affecting the required hours of operation.