Special Education In Preschool

Section 619 of the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA Act) addresses creating a special education preschool program for children ages 3 to 5. Part B of Section 619 guarantees free appropriate public education (FAPE) to students who have developmental delays and/or disabilities after their third birthday.

Many parents are nervous to send their delayed or disabled kid to a public school. Although Section 619 can help those who decide to teach their kids at home, to maximize the effectiveness of the services, it is better for it to be done in traditional preschool settings with the help with a special education instructor. There are several benefits for using your services in conjunction with a regular preschool because children with disabilities need socialization with peers, to play, to hear language and gain other skills the same as other children. Also, exposing non-disabled children to children with disabilities early on will reduce the stigma that people with disabilities are bad. Children can learn that they are not so different and that everyone learns in their own unique way. Also, if your child is attending a public preschool, the school must also provide transportation.

If you are not sure if your child needs special education services, there are diagnostic screenings available to determine if your child has a delay or disability. Based on your child’s test results and reports, you might be eligible to apply for Section 619. The team will develop what is called an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) and give recommendations for other services like speech therapy and physical therapy.

If you don’t know where to turn, every state has a Section 619 coordinator. You can find your state’s coordinator at this website: http://ectacenter.org/contact/619coord.asp

Between early intervention and preschool special education programs, there’s a chance that the child might not need special education as they progress throughout their school years depending on the delay or disability. Everyone has the right to FAPE.

What Happens to Your Child’s IEP When You Switch Schools?

If your child requires an Individualized Education Program (or IEP), then you’ve probably been through the ringer a couple of times, and the gravity of your own decisions on the life of your child probably isn’t lost on you. If you’re experiencing a transition in your life, and that change affects your child as well, it can become a real hassle, and sometimes you won’t have the right answers at the right time. So what happens to your child’s IEP when they switch schools? It’s not all bad news.

First and foremost, your child’s IEP will not change if you’re switching to a new school within the same district. Whichever IEP you initially chose, it was a pact between you and the district in which you reside. No change in district means there is no change in the pact. Congratulations.

If you find that you need to move farther away, for example from California to NYC, and commuting to the old school district becomes impossible, then you probably will need a new IEP for the new school district, especially if it is in a new state. Fortunately, every state uses the same IEP terminology, even if that state has different rules that are applied to it. In the case that you move, you just need to do a little bit more research to find out about what’s available where you are and how different it is from what you already had.

If you switch to a different district in the same state, that district will ultimately decide how to handle the transition for your child’s IEP. It can choose to continue providing the resources for the current IEP, or it can choose to offer a new one that hopefully both parties will find amenable. Even if the new district decides to offer a new IEP, you can choose to be a part of the process or not. It’s up to you to do what you find is best for your child’s continuing education.

The problem with moving to a different state is law. Each state regulates education differently, and although those differences can be subtle at times, chances are you’ll find some of the details will change your child’s ability to maintain a place within the program at all. If the state rules regarding IEP find that your child is not eligible, there is not much you can do. It’s up to the school district to decide whether or not the child qualifies, and if he or she does, then they may also decide to offer a new evaluation for a new IEP. No matter the state, you’re still a part of the process if you choose to be.

The bottom line is this: moving might impact your child’s education in a big way, and it’s important to research how any potential moves can affect both of you long-term.

What is The National Technical Institute for the Deaf?

The deaf and hard of hearing don’t always require the support of outside networks, because they build their own. The deaf community is strong and robust, and the pride of its members is unrivaled. If you were to ask a deaf person whether or not they would choose to be granted the ability to hear, the answers of many might surprise you. Most individuals who are born deaf do not consider themselves disadvantaged or disabled in any way, and many would choose to remain deaf in order to remain a part of the greater community. Even so, many institutions do provide support for those who require it. The National Technical Institute for the Deaf is one such institution.

The National Technical Institute for the Deaf (or NTID) is one of nine colleges that make up the Rochester Institute of Technology (or RIT). Of the 15,000 undergrads who choose to study at RIT, 1,200 are deaf or hard of hearing. That’s because the NTID provides the tools they need to learn on an equal footing with their peers who aren’t deaf. NTID has a number of programs that focus on career paths for any student, and has a phenomenal graduation rate. The NTID job placement rate is top of the line as well.

The mission statement of the NTID is simple, yet profound in its scope: the institute strives to give deaf or hard of hearing students state of the art technical programs, while complementing education with traditional arts and sciences packages. The purpose of all of this is to teach students how to maintain a proper work-life balance when they must eventually integrate with a fast-paced and quickly transforming world on the outside.

On top of that, NTID also strives to enhance already-strong networks for deaf and hard of hearing individuals by training new professionals how to work with them and for them. The institute complements its mission by taking advantage of research opportunities that might prove helpful to deaf members and people in general. The college does not keep the fruits of this labor to itself. Instead, it disseminates the relevant knowledge acquired to other organizations and institutions that could make use of it.

The instructors at NTID use a variety of methods to communicate with students. Sign language is of course used, as is fingerspelling, visual aids, and the Internet which provides material on the web. Tutoring is available for those who require it, as are the resources of any of the other eight colleges within RIT. When necessary, captioning services are rendered. NTID currently retains the biggest staff of interpreters for deaf or hard of hearing students in the United States, according to a personal injury attorney in Dallas.

What is The Association of Higher Education and Disability?

The Association of Higher Education and Disability (or AHEAD) is a grand international network comprised of more than 2,800 member organizations located in countries like the United States, England, Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Greece, Japan, and many others. The purpose behind AHEAD is to help those tasked with developing policies that cater to those with disabilities. AHEAD provides extensive training for professionals who work in higher education institutions through a variety of means, including workshops and conferences, and various publications that help extend the influence of the network further than it would go otherwise.

AHEAD prides itself on the diversity of the entire network. The primary goal of the network is helping those with disabilities achieve equality in daily activities. AHEAD believes that participation by these individuals is key to a normal experience in higher education, and works to promote greater involvement.

A big part of what AHEAD does happens because of involvement by the governments behind each member. Without the support and continued  involvement from government bodies throughout the world, the network could not achieve what it does. That’s why AHEAD routinely discusses in an open forum different regulations that are instituted around the world. In the U.S., for example, AHEAD was able to comment on and influence the consequences of the ADAAA of 2008, which was passed in order to maintain previous laws passed ensuring that disabled Americans could not be discriminated against. When senate confirmation hearings began for Judge Sotomayor in 2009, AHEAD was there to put its two cents in and make sure that members inside of the network were informed of relevant news items.

Among the core values of AHEAD are diversity, wherein the platform helps foster more diverse communities inside of higher education institutions. Another is equity, wherein AHEAD strategically develops the resources needed for those with disabilities to achieve all they can. Respect is another, because everyone should be allowed to express individuality regardless of their differences. Lastly, the network promotes inclusivity, to ensure the participation of all who wish it.

Institutions and organizations like AHEAD help propel some of the world’s lesser represented individuals into the limelight, where they find the support they need to excel in a world that sometimes seems out to get them. Even so, the success or failure of such networks is limited because so many people aren’t aware they exist–and many others don’t seem to care. AHEAD will continue to fight the good fight for the foreseeable future.

A Speech Pathologist Can Help Those With Communication Disorders

A speech pathologist is a clinician who specializes in diagnosing, evaluating, and treating cognition, communication, swallowing and voice disorders. Speech pathology involves more than helping a person learn to talk or speak correctly. The discipline involves working with the entire spectrum of language, speech, voice and swallowing issues. These include:

– Problems with social communications which involves how people communicate their ideas to others.

– Issues with finding the correct word. This can be caused by a language delay or dementia.

– Issues with literacy including writing and reading when it is related to phonics, understanding written text, or understanding the meaning of words in context.

– Issues with language structure including creating sentences which are meaningful and grammatical.

– Cognitive impairments such as executive function, attention or memory when they interfere with communication.

– Issues with voice quality such as a too-soft voice or a raspy voice.

Speech pathologists work with patients who have trouble communicating including difficulties listening, speaking, reading, understanding language, writing, stuttering, and social skills, according to many law firms. The people who work with a speech pathologist have trouble communicating due to a variety of issues. These include developmental delays, cerebral palsy, stroke, learning disability, brain injuries, dementia, intellectual disability, and hearing loss. A speech pathologist can also help those who have trouble drinking or swallowing food safely.

A speech pathologist is employed in different settings including private clinics, schools, public health agencies, nursing homes, and hospitals. Other institutions such as universities, health departments, federal and state governments, and research laboratories also employ speech pathologists. Speech pathologists often specialize in either working with children or adults.

A speech pathologist must obtain certification in Speech-Language Pathology. They must earn a graduate degree and complete a clinical practicum through an accredited university or college. The school must be accredited in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology by the Council on Academic Accreditation. Applicants finish required clinical and pass a national exam. Individuals who want to do research, college teaching or private practice must have a Ph.D.

Many speech pathologists also hold a degree and certification in audiology. This is a fast-growing profession, especially for those who want to specialize in working with older adults. Additionally, medical advances have increased the survival rate for premature babies as well as stroke and trauma victims. Another factor in the growth of this profession is the growth in secondary and elementary school enrollments.

Speech pathologists are highly-qualified professionals who help individuals who have communication disorders. They must have at least a graduate degree, complete a clinical practicum and pass a national exam.

What Is An Occupational Therapist? An Overview

Are you interested in learning more about what an occupational therapist actually is and what they do? If so, this guide is going to give you all the key information you need, including a summary of what the role entails, and some of the benefits they can provide to their patients. Keeping this in mind, let’s take a closer look.

What is an occupational therapist?

In general, an occupational therapist is someone who is focused on working with people who suffer from injuries, disabilities, or other impairments that have an impact on how they can live their life.

As such, the occupational therapist will use a wide range of skills to help a person achieve the things they want to achieve and perform the tasks that they need to in order to live a happy and successful life.

In fact, the easiest way to summon the role of an occupational therapist is that they are focused on helping a person to live their life to the fullest, regardless of any disability, injury, or illness that may be holding them back.

What does an occupational therapist do?

In most cases, the occupational therapist will first evaluate their patient’s life and help them to determine what they need to do in order to achieve success with the different daily activities they want to accomplish.

A customized intervention plan will usually be developed, and this will often be the most efficient way to make progress towards helping the person achieve the outcomes they desire.

It’s also worth noting that a skilled occupational therapist will approach the task from a holistic perspective, and this can involve adapting the environment to the person, training the person, or using any science-based or evidence-based solution to achieve the goal.

What are the benefits of seeing an occupational therapist?

As you would expect, seeing a skilled occupational therapist can have a big impact on your life if you are dealing with any kind of injury or disability that is hampering you from achieving everything you want.

Whether it is learning how to fully participate in social situations, the education system, or your work role, an occupational therapist can give you the support and assistance you need to develop your skills, and train yourself to take part in life at your fullest potential.


Overall, it’s clear to see that occupational therapy plays a key role in many people’s lives, and they are essential in helping people from all backgrounds and all walks of life to fulfill their daily ambitions and activities.

Understanding The Facts About An Individualized Family Service Plan

Once a child has been identified as having developmental delays then parents will want to immediately apply for an Individual Family Service Plan. This plan is specifically for children who are infants and up to 3 years old. A service coordinator will help develop this specific individual family service plan for eligible children and their family. This plan specifically works to help get the very best result for the child’s development through public education.

Is IFSP And IEP The Same Thing?

The big difference between these two plans is the fact that an infant or child up to the age of 3 depends wholly and totally on their family. For this reason, the individual family service plan will be based on the whole family dynamic when developing the plan to maximize the child’s development. The Individual Education Program, on the other hand, is based completely on the student and this program or plan specifically focuses on the education of the child.

Parents will want to recognize that they should play an intricate part in the development of the individual family service plan. Because this plan will focus completely on the family and how it can help the child to significantly improve, then the parents must be involved.

What’s Included In The Individual Family Service Plan?

It must be determined exactly what level of functioning your child has with regard to their ability to communicate, their cognitive abilities, their physical abilities, they’re emotional and adaptive development are all things that need to be understood when formulating this plan. Parents will need to know that very often all of these things can be greatly improved with time and patience and with the correct amount of determination when helping your child.

Some of the determinations that will be made while formulating this plan are the results that parents can expect to achieve for their child. There will be specific plans for early intervention and for developing as many situations in a natural environment as possible. It will also be determined where and when meetings will take place.

Once The IFSP Is Ready To Be Implemented

Once the plan is ready to be implemented it will require the parent’s written consent. Once that happens then the particular plan that was formulated will then be carried out on behalf of the child. All the information that was gathered will be used as a roadmap to develop the plan for your child.

What Is An Individualized Education Plan (IEP)?

In its simplest terms, the IEP is a document that is used by a public school to determine the needs of a child who has special requirements for any reason related to a physical or learning based disability.

In most circumstances, the plan is developed to help a child with disabilities to ensure that they still receive a high-quality education despite the disabilities they may have.

What is its main purpose?

The main purpose of the document is to allow an opportunity for parents, teachers, students, and any related authorities to determine the best course of action to help the child get the education they need without being unduly handicapped by any disabilities they may have.

The individualized plan makes it easy to ensure everybody’s on the same page regarding learning issues, and it also presents the ideal place for specific educational goals to be set.

What information is usually included?

The information required in the plan can vary over time, and it will be reviewed at regular intervals to ensure that all of the child’s needs are being met.

In general, the plan will include information regarding the overall curriculum that will be followed, along with any suitable extracurricular activities and nonacademic activities that are relevant to the child’s education.

It will also include a statement of annual goals, a description of how the child is progressing towards these annual goals, and further information regarding the child’s current level of academic achievement as well as their overall functional performance in the educational system.

At the end of the day, it’s safe to say that the individualized education plan is an essential document for ensuring that a child with disabilities is receiving the special care and attention they need to make sure they receive a quality education without being held back due to physical or learning disabilities.

By collaborating with parents and teachers, it’s possible to develop an effective plan that’ll help the child reach their full potential, and the individualized education plan is a document that is at the heart of making sure this process happens.

My Child Is In An Inclusion Classroom. Should I Be Worried?

With the school year quickly approaching us, many parents are beginning to learn a bit more about what the school year will bring for their children. A question we often get from parents is whether or not they should be nervous about their child with no special needs being in an inclusion classroom.

We know that it can be hard to imagine because of all of the horror stories people tell about schools being ill-equipped to handle children with special needs, but inclusion classrooms are a great situation for everyone involved. First of all, the fact that your classroom is an inclusion classroom means that the child/children with special needs are on a defined education plan, and have already worked on what the best strategies are for not only their education, but how to keep them calm and ready to learn in a classroom environment.

With that in mind, inclusion classrooms have a much better teacher-student ratio than traditional classrooms. As special needs children often require an instructor to help them pay attention and learn at their own speed, inclusion classrooms have more adults in the classroom at any given time. While the special needs instructors are there for their special needs students, they will be able to collaborate with the head teacher to keep the classroom calm and informative for every student. In addition, if your child has a question during a lesson, they might be able to ask the special needs instructor instead of disrupting the head teacher with a question. Little things like this add up over the course of the year, and you will find that inclusion classrooms are great not only for children with special needs, but for the students in the class without special needs.

One thing many parents get nervous about when it comes to inclusion classrooms is how the teacher(s) will react to a student with special needs acting up and disrupting the class. As we stated before, there are a lot of “horror stories” concerning special needs students disrupting the normal flow of a classroom. While there is some level of truth to this, that disruption often comes before the establishment of their IEP, which contains thoroughly researched and practiced strategies and methods to help the student with special needs develop without distracting themselves or others. Essentially, being in an inclusion classroom means that there are a certain amount of students in your class that teachers are perfectly prepared to deal with in the event of an outburst, which cannot be said about the children without IEPs. Compare that to troublesome students who might not have an IEP: does it really matter if they have or don’t have special needs if they are a disruption to your students’ education? At the end of the day, you just want your child to learn without interruption: IEPs and inclusion classrooms help them do that.

If you would like to learn more about special needs in our schools, please continue to visit our site as we continue to write more content. Have a wonderful Monday!

IDEA: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

This monumental piece of legislation stems from an earlier Act in 1975 called The Education For All Handicapped Children Act. As of 2001, more than 6 million children in the United States were characterized as disabled. The IDEA Act requires that public schools provide specialized services for children with disabilities from birth to the age of 21 years old.

One of the ways they do this is by creating an Individualized Education Program also known as an IEP. Every student who is disabled is mandated by law to have an IEP. An IEP is a plan designed by parents, teachers, specialists and if possible the student to determine current achievement level as well as specific goals to be fulfilled by the end of the year as well as services necessary to achieve those goals.

Disabilities that are covered an IEP include:

  • Autism
  • Deaf-Blindness
  • Deafness
  • Emotional Disturbance
  • Hearing Impairment
  • Intellectual Disability (Mental Retardation)
  • Multiple Disabilities
  • Orthopedic Impairment
  • Other Health Impairments
  • Specific Learning Disability
  • Speech or Language Impairment
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Visual Impairment