Early intervention means getting started as early as possible to address the individual needs of a child with hearing loss, to enhance the infant or toddler's development, to minimize the potential for developmental delay, and to enhance the family's capacity to meet the child's needs. Early intervention is a system of services to help eligible children from birth until their third birthday.
Two federal laws - PL 105-17, Part C, and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) - regulate early intervention services. Together, these laws encourage states to develop coordinated programs of early intervention services for children with disabilities from birth to age three, and require that these children and their parents have the same legal right to a free and appropriate education as children without disabilities.
Early intervention programs typically have both home-based and center-based services. Home-based services include a weekly visit to the family’s home from an infant specialist. Center-based services include playgroups, parent groups, and sign language classes.
Center on Human Development and Disability,
UW LEND, University of Washington,
Box 357920, Seattle, WA 98195-7920 firstname.lastname@example.org