Optimizing Your Child’s Development through Evaluation

Early detection of learning and developmental delays is critically important when determining the type of supports your child requires for educational success. Children who are at risk of having a developmental delay and are referred to us by their district’s Committee on Special Preschool Education (CPSE) receive a comprehensive assessment from our Evaluation Unit at no cost to families.

Understanding the Evaluation Process

Initial Referral to the Committee on Preschool Special Education:

Parents, doctors, or designated individuals in a public agency who observe a delay in the speech/language, cognitive and/or motor development of a child approaching three years of age, can make a request to their district’s CPSE for the child to be evaluated.

Individual Evaluation Process:

Upon referral to the CPSE, parents will sign consent for the child to be evaluated to determine if special education services are needed. The evaluation includes a physical examination, a psychological evaluation, a social history, an observation of the child in his/her current education setting, as well as other assessments that are deemed appropriate (such as speech and language, functional behavioral assessment, occupational therapy, physical therapy, etc.).

Evaluation Findings and CPSE Recommendations:

A meeting with the CPSE administrator will be scheduled and evaluation results will be reviewed with parents. The CPSE, including parents, will determine if the child is eligible for special education services. If the child qualifies, an Individualized Education Program (IEP) will be developed to meet the child’s needs. Supports, services, and modifications will be discussed to assist the child in reaching the goals on the IEP. At least once a year, the committee will review the child’s IEP.

Why would parents seek an evaluation?

By the time most children are of preschool age, they have learned many skills that help them negotiate their environment and relate to the people around them. Preschoolers usually enjoy listening, talking, running, and playing with others. If parents are not comfortable with their child’s progress in developing these skills, they can begin this referral process with their district CPSE.

What kind of help is available?

If it is determined that the child meets the eligibility criteria for educational and related services (such as speech, physical, or occupational therapy), arrangements are then made through the CPSE for Birch to enroll the child in one of our educational programs at no cost to parents.