Early Intervention, School Systems, and State Services

Millions of children in the United States are classified as disabled under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), a federal law that outlines special services designed to meet the unique needs of children with disabilities. These services are provided in two very different systems.

The early intervention system is responsible for services from the time the child is born until the child’s third birthday. From age 3 through 21 years, the school system is responsible for providing special education and related services. In order to obtain needed resources for children with disabilities, nurses need a working knowledge of these two systems.





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