Early Childhood Special Education
The Early Childhood Special Education Office provides oversight to a wide range of special education programs and services for children birth to five who have identified special education needs. In accordance with state and federal law, unique programs and services for both infants and preschool children are supported by this office.
The Infant Program provides early intervention services for children birth to three years of age who have been identified with a hearing loss, visual impairment, or severe orthopedic impairment. The infant services focus on supporting the overall development of the child and providing resources and education to family members and other caregivers. The services are delivered in the natural environment for the child and in the context of the family. Families and staff work together to develop an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) that guides the service delivery for each child and family.
The Preschool Program provides special education services for children three to five years of age who have been identified with one of the federal and state defined special education eligibilities. The programs are designed to promote a partnership between professionals and families to help meet the child's individual needs and increase future school success. Children are served in the least restrictive environment in a wide variety of early childhood settings. Emphasis is placed on the development of language, social-emotional, motor and pre-academic skills through activities and materials that are concrete and relevant to their lives. Families and staff work together to develop an Individualized Education Program (IEP) that guides the service delivery for each child.
Early Childhood Special Education - Child Find Information
The District is in contact with a variety of outside agencies, early education centers, Head Start agencies, community preschools, regional centers, family resource centers, and neonatal intensive care units to implement child find activities.
In most cases, three and four year olds are not enrolled in public school programs. Therefore, a primary responsibility of the District is to make families, schools and agencies aware of available criteria for eligibility and special education services.
“Child Find” information is disseminated through letters, program brochures, presentations and workshops. Such educational information is directed to the following:
- Neighborhood schools
- Early Education Centers
- District classes for 4 year old children, Expanded Transitional Kindergarten (ETK), California State Preschool Programs, Los Angeles Universal Preschool Classes
- Pre-Kindergarten and Family Literacy Program Classrooms
- Head Start agencies
- Los Angeles Universal Preschool (LAUP) programs
- Regional Centers
- Family Resource Centers
- Hospitals and clinics
- Community preschools
- Child Care providers
- Child Care Resources and Referral Agencies
- Department of Children and Family Services
- Los Angeles County Office of Child Care
- Los Angeles County First 5