Child Find assists school districts in the early identification of children, birth through age 21, who have disabilities or who may have learning problems. For PreK students, this is accomplished through testing which measures basic hearing, vision, language, self-help, social interactions, cognitive and motor development. If there is an indication that a child may have problems in these areas, he or she is referred for further testing. The Children's Registry and Information System (CHRIS) is used to provide information for effective service delivery. Interagency collaboration is a major focus in securing and delivering services to this population.
For students in K-12, parents or teachers refer students suspected of being a student with a disability to the Instructional Support Team or Child Study Team at each school for evaluation.
- Awareness activities to insure that the general public receives ongoing, consistent information about Child Find services and how to access services for children who have disabilities or who are at risk of disability;
- Outreach activities to insure that Child Find services are provided in community settings in order to locate, obtain referrals, screen, evaluate, or initiate service planning for children and their families who are in need of services;
- Information and Referral services to receive and respond to requests for general information about Child Find and other programs and services as well as to refer children and their families for screening, evaluation, or other needed services;
- Screening services to assist in the identification of children who need formal evaluations and to identify additional services needed by children and families. Screening services may include data gathering and records review as well as administration of formal and informal screening procedures such as for vision, hearing, and speech and language;
- Evaluation services for the formal, systematic examination of the educational, psychological, social, emotional, and/or medical and physical characteristics of children with developmental disabilities or who are at risk for a disability for the specific purpose of determining eligibility for special education or related services;
- Training for faculty/staff in recognizing characteristics of various disabilities and using the Response to Intervention as part of the evaluative process to determine eligibility under IDEA or Section 504 of the American Disabilities Act.
- Service Planning and Initiation to insure that, based upon screening and evaluation information, the child and family are linked to the local school district and other community agencies and organizations that can meet their identified needs, that plans are made to deliver the needed services, and that services are scheduled.