What Is Child Find?
Child find is a component of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act of 2004 (IDEA ’04) that requires states to locate, identify, and evaluate all children with disabilities, ages birth through 21 years, who are in need of early intervention or special education services. This includes children who are highly mobile, such as migrant or homeless children, children suspected of having a disability even though they are advancing from grade to grade, private school students, and homeschool students. The Arizona initiative for child find is referred to as AZ FIND.
Developmental and Educational Services for Children Ages Birth through 21 Years
Some children have more difficulty learning than others. They may have trouble achieving milestones in one or more of the following developmental or academic areas:
- Vision and Hearing
- Motor Control or Coordination
- Behavior or Social Skills
- Speech or Communication Skills
- Cognitive or Academic Skills
A referral for early intervention or special education services can come from a parent, guardian, foster parent, family member, teacher, counselor, or student who finds learning difficult. The earlier you express your concerns, the sooner your child’s needs will be identified and the sooner he or she will receive the help needed to succeed.
Help for Infants and Toddlers
Children ages birth to 2 years 10.5 months are screened through the Arizona Early Intervention Program (AzEIP) to determine if early intervention services are needed. Early intervention brings professionals, working in partnership with parents and families of children with special needs, together to support infants’ or toddlers’ growth, development, and learning. If you have questions about your child’s development, an AzEIP specialist will talk with you about your concerns and observe your child. If your child is found eligible, a plan will be designed to include strategies, activities, and supports to achieve desired outcomes related to your child’s needs. Make an online referral at www.azdes.gov/azeip. For more information, call (602) 532-9960.
Help for Preschool and School-Aged Children
Sahuarita Unified School District screens children ages 2 years 10.5 months through 21 years. SUSD schools use an informal screening process to check your child’s development and academic progress.
- Screening must be completed within 45 calendar days of the date you notify the school of your concerns.
- When a concern is identified through screening procedures, you must be notified within 10 school days and informed of procedures to follow up on your child’s needs. For example:
- Your child may be referred to the school’s child study team for pre-intervention services; or,
- If screening results indicate your child may have a disability, a comprehensive evaluation may be necessary to determine eligibility for special education and related services. A team (including parent/guardian) will meet to begin the process. Screening and evaluation are free. All information contained in the screening or evaluation is confidential.
What should I look for?
Children who are showing needs in any of the following areas may have a learning difficulty:
- self-help skills
- behavior/social skills
- manipulating small objects/drawing
Who should I contact?
For preschool-aged students (2 years 10.5 months through 5 years), please contact the Early Childhood Center Child Find office at 520-625-3502 x1929
For school-aged children (5 years through 21 years) contact their school of attendance or the Student Services office at 520-625-3502 x1011 or 1020.
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