Last week we talked about IDEA, which is a law mandating that children with disabilities receive educational services. For the next two weeks, we will look at what kind of services they receive.
The first thing to know is that services vary by age. You might be surprised to learn that babies are eligible for services under IDEA! Our son Tyler, who was blind from stage 5 Retinopathy of Prematurity, started getting some services before he even got home from the hospital. Babies start learning about their environment as soon as they are born, and it's important that visually impaired babies don't fall behind their sighted peers.
Another surprise might be that IDEA services can be available until a student is 22 years old. Some students with multiple disabilities are not able to graduate at the typical age, and it is good to give them a bit more time.
So here are the breakdowns for services by age:
Check back tomorrow when we talk about birth to age three!
I'm the owner of Family First Braille, the author of this blog, and the editor of Family First Braille Magazine.