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For many of our families, New Story Schools partners with school districts to provide services to students with autism or emotional support needs when district personnel identifies a student who would benefit from an out of district placement.

At New Story Schools, we know students can thrive when placement at our school is a decision the entire Individualized Education Plan (IEP) team stands behind. We work hand in hand with district partners to determine appropriate out of district placements for each child and young adult needing additional services. 

In Ohio, families can self-enroll in New Story Schools, using Ohio scholarship programs. Learn more on the scholarship pageClick here to know more about New Story School scholarship.

Exploring an out of district placement often feels overwhelming and confusing. If you have questions, we are here to help you navigate this process. Email or fill out the form on the Contact Us page and we will be in touch with you in 24-48 hours to answer any questions you may have. We are here to help. 

A typical enrollment process includes: 

Review of Referral

Once a referral is received, the information is reviewed with these questions being asked:

  • Does the student have an IEP?
  • What are the primary symptoms of the disability that impede learning for this student?
  • Does the student have any other co-existing diagnosis (i.e., Mental Health Issues)?
  • Does the student have any special medical needs?
  • What is the educational/medical history of this student before seeking this placement?
  • What is the reason the student is being referred to New Story Schools? What led to the IEP team’s decision that the student needs a licensed, private facility to best meet his/her needs?

After a review of the paperwork, New Story Schools staff may conduct an observation of the student in their current academic environment.


After we have evaluated the referral, families and districts are encouraged to tour the facility and observe the classroom where the student will be placed. The tour provides families the opportunity to ask any questions about the academic and behavioral support we can offer their student.

Placement Planning

Once the IEP team agrees on an out-of-district placement at a New Story Schools, we move into gathering the information for a student to begin their placement. This includes:

  • Sending a school district agreement for services to the referring district
  • Holding an intake IEP meeting to review and modify the current IEP to transition the student from his/her current placement to New Story Schools
  • Understanding the arrangements for transportation, coordinating as needed with the referring district


When students begin their placement at New Story Schools, we ensure that we provide appropriate academic instruction and behavior interventions based on an array of assessments. We also use the data to place the student on the appropriate level of tiered supports.

Though we provide intensive assessments at the start of every student’s tenure at New Story Schools, our evaluation of each student and their progress is constant. We work to keep in active communication with a student’s district and family about their needs and improvements in our program, both formally and informally. Please see the information in our services section to learn more about the different therapies and interventions available.

Discharge Planning

New Story Schools works closely with the school district to provide intensive behavioral and educational interventions that will help students gain the skills needed to return to a less restrictive environment. When the IEP team recognizes the student is demonstrating consistent progress related to the skills expected upon return to the district, an IEP team meeting is called and a plan is developed for the student to return to the district.

Transition plans for students to return to district settings, developed by the IEP Team, are individualized per student and district needs.

The New Story team will collaborate with the student’s home district to integrate the child into school-related extra-curricular activities and after school programs. These areas are considered when developing a discharge plan:

  • Is the student able to integrate and effectively communicate with peers?
  • Is the student able to self-monitor and de-escalate during difficult situations?
  • Can the student build and maintain satisfactory interpersonal relationships?
  • Are therapeutic services in place to maintain and develop self-confidence?
  • Establish a plan with the home district and family to encourage consistent attendance and participation.