Skip To Main Content

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Early Start/Infant Program?

The Early Intervention Program for Infants and Toddlers with Disabilities was enacted in 1986 under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA; 20; U.S.C., Section 1431 et seq.). This program is California's response to federal legislation ensuring that early intervention services for infants and toddler with disabilities and their families are provided in a coordinated, family-centered system of services that are available statewide.

Who is eligible?

  • Infants and toddlers from birth to age 36 months may be eligible for early intervention services through Early Start if, through documented evaluation and assessment, they meet one of the criteria listed below:
  • have a developmental delay of at least 33% in one or more areas of cognitive, communication, social or emotional, adaptive, or physical and motor development including vision and hearing; or

  • have an established risk condition of known etiology, with a high probability of resulting in delayed development; or

  • be considered at high risk of having a substantial developmental disability due to a combination of biomedical risk factors of which are diagnosed by qualified personnel

What early intervention services are available?

Based on the child's assessed developmental needs and the families concerns and priorities as determined by each child's Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) team, early intervention services may include:

  • Assistive technology

  • Audiology

  • Family training, counseling, and home visits

  • Health services

  • Medical services for diagnostic/evaluation purposes only

  • Nursing services

  • Nutrition services

  • Occupational therapy

  • Physical therapy

  • Psychological services

  • Service coordination (case management)

  • Social work services

  • Special instruction

  • Speech and language services

  • Transportation and related costs

  • Vision services

How can I receive a referral for early intervention services?

You can call SW SELPA  at (310) 680-5770 or your home district to request an evaluation for the child. After contacting us, a service coordinator will be assigned to help the child's parents through the process to determine eligibility.

What happens after a referral?

  • Within 45-days when you initially contact the Early Start/Infant Program, our program shall:
  • Assign a service coordinator to assist the family through evaluation and assessment procedures

  • Obtain parental consent for evaluation

  • Schedule and complete evaluations and assessments of the child's development.

  • If an infant or toddler is eligible for early intervention services, an Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP) will be developed that addresses the strengths, and needs of the infant or toddler, parental concerns, and early intervention services.

  • Identify early intervention services that are provided in the family home or other community settings.

Who provides services?

The LESD Early Start/Infant Program will provide services through the regional program.

How much does it cost?

There is no cost for evaluation, assessment and service coordination.