Frequently Asked Questions

How do children get referred?

Referrals to our program come from different sources. Children may transition from First Steps services and/or parents may contact this program to refer their child. 

How is eligibility determined?

A multidisciplinary team of educators and therapists evaluate children based on their inpidual needs. When testing is completed, a case conference committee meets to determine the child’s educational needs. This committee is made up of parents, a school representative, and educational specialists in the area of need. 

What services will be provided?

After a child is evaluated and found eligible, an IEP (Individual Education Plan) will be developed by the case conference committee. Services are provided based on each child’s educational needs. These services may include: placement in a community preschool with consultation by an early childhood teacher, a special education preschool class located in our schools, speech/language therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, vision therapy, and/or hearing services. Transportation may be provided.

If my child receives services through First Steps, will he/she automatically be eligible for services through the schools’ preschool program? 

In Indiana, criteria for eligibility for Early Childhood Special Education is different from First Steps. Therefore, some children who receive services through First Steps may not be eligible for services through schools.

Will my child receive a label? 

There are eligibility criteria for special education. To receive special education services, a child must meet these criteria for a specific disability. The label is necessary in order to plan for and meet educational needs.

How much will these services cost? 

Special education services recommended and deemed educationally appropriate for the child, by the case conference committee, are provided by your local school district at no cost to the family.

How often will my child’s progress be monitored by teachers and therapists? 

Progress is measured frequently in the classroom and therapy setting. Written progress reports will be shared with parents with the same frequency of those given to all students (about every 9 weeks).  A case conference can be held at any time to discuss progress.