Introduction

Welcome to the Early Childhood topic page. The purpose of this webpage is to provide information, resources, and training for those working with young children with disabilities, ages three to five. You will find the link to the Early Childhood Outcomes (ECO) Data Collection System, Idaho Early Learning eGuidelines, Early Childhood SPED Parent Brochure, and many other resources to support you in your work. 

This webpage is organized into six sections:

  • What’s New – This section includes new information as it becomes available. Check this section frequently to learn about any exciting news or upcoming events. Information in this section will move into other relevant sections as it ages.
  • FAQ – This section includes some frequently asked questions that should be the first place you go for answers. The FAQ section is open to expansion as other frequently asked questions become apparent.
  • Early Childhood Resources – This section includes links to a variety of early childhood resources; including topics related to early childhood outcomes (ECO), higher education, instructional resources, organizations, and screenings.   When you discover terrific web-based resources, please share them with us. 
  • Documents –This section includes documents and resources relevant to screening, supporting, teaching, and transitioning young children receiving Part B services.   Handouts and resources from webinars and trainings are also located under the Documents tab.

The Early Childhood Outcomes (ECO) are used to evaluate the effectiveness of early intervention and early childhood special education.  There are  three child outcome statements that are the focus of the Office of Special Education's (OSEP) accountability reporting requirements for the Part B/Section 619 Early Childhood Special Education programs serving young children with disabilities; Positive Social Emotional Skills, Acquiring and Using Knowledge and Skills, and Taking Appropriate Action to Meet Needs.  OSEP requires states to report on the extent to which children's progress on each outcome moving them nearer to functioning comparable to same-aged peers in these areas.   Additionally, these outcomes are used by school teams to help plan programs that focus on increasing functional outcomes that promote later school success.

Two helpful resources:
ECO Parent Brochure
Idaho ECO Decision Tree

Planning for transition is an ongoing interagency process that explores options and provides information, support and linkages to new situations and services. Joint planning between agencies is necessary to ensure a smooth and effective transition for children and their families. Transition issues may include the shift from one service system to another, differences in eligibility requirements, new demands for child participation, differing expectations for child behavior and "readiness," new types and levels of staff involvement and training, and philosophical shifts in intervention models. Careful and thoughtful joint planning by the local early intervention program and the local school district (LEA) will promote smooth and coordinated movement between programs and services.

Across the various pages of this community (e.g., FAQ, Documents, Trainings, Links) is transition specific information to assist preschool teachers, special education directors and other school personnel involved in transition activities.

Under Documents you will find the necessary protocol forms to complete interagency agreements between the Infant Toddler and Head Start Programs.

Early childhood is a critical period in the life of a child. It is during this period that the foundation is laid for all later development and learning. Children develop skills through active participation with peers, family, and the world around them. All children, including children with disabilities, are dependent upon their experiences and opportunities available within everyday activities to develop and build a strong foundation for learning. A “least restrictive environment,” as outlined in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and its accompanying federal and state rules, regulations and policy, requires that children with disabilities, aged 3-21, be educated with children who do not have disabilities. For school-age children, the least restrictive environment is the general education classroom. For students under school-aged eligibility, the range of options are varied including child care centers, Head Start, private preschool programs, and religious preschool programs that support students with and without disabilities. In early childhood, “least restrictive” is often referred to as “inclusive” environments.

Helpful resource:
Idaho LRE Decision Tree


What's New?

Early Childhood Webinar Series - REGISTRATION IS OPEN

Autism Spectrum Disorder - November 5, 2019 - View Recording
Early Childhood Evidence-Based Practices - December 3, 2019 - View Recording
EC Social and Emotional Development - January 7, 2020 - Register
Play Based Intentional Teaching - February 4, 2020 - Register
Family Engagement - March 3, 2020 - Register
Discrete Trials - April 7, 2020 - Register


FAQ

'Exit' data is entered when a child is leaving the preschool special education program or is no longer eligible for a related service, such as speech therapy.

Students early childhood special education and age eligible will be required to use the new Early Childhood IEP forms.  Age eligibility reflects students that are 3 years of age through kindergarten age eligible 5, or 5 on September 1, will be using the Early Childhood IEP forms.  So if the student is being placed on an IEP for the first time, is 5 years of age and attending an early childhood special education program, not kindergarten eligible, then the form will be used

Districts are able to have children younger than 3 years of age spend time in their early childhood special education program as part of the transition from Part C to Part B process, eligibility and evaluation process.

 


Links


Early Childhood Resources

The Early Childhood Resources represent specific topics that address the resources function. For example, you will find useful information about the Early Childhood Outcomes (ECO), as well as documents used in collecting and reporting on the ECOs. Some resources serve multiple purposes. In this case, I suggest using the search feature to locate a title specific document.

Topic areas:
  • Early Childhood Outcomes
  • Least Restrictive Environment (LRE)
  • Transitions (represents transitional activities between Part C and Part B)
  • Parent Information
  • Anchor Assessments
  • Screening/Child Find
  • Eligibility
  • IEP Development

Contact Us


shannon dunstan

Results Driven Accountability and Early Childhood Coordinator
Idaho State Department of Education
P.O. Box 83720 Boise, Idaho 83720
208-332-6908 (Office)
208-703-1660 (Cell)
sdunstan@sde.idaho.gov

sde Idaho State Department of Education
650 W. State Street
PO Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720-0027