Ohio’s Part C/Early Intervention system aims to identify and serve children under the age of three with developmental delays and disabilities, as provided for under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Throughout Ohio’s 88 counties, local Help Me Grow programs communicate with parents, doctors, hospitals, child care providers and other community agencies to identify children with existing developmental delays, or those with medical diagnoses with a high probability of delay.
Parents and caregivers with concerns regarding their child’s development can have their infant or toddler evaluated by an interdisciplinary team at absolutely no cost to the family. Children are evaluated for delays in the areas of adaptive, cognitive, communication, physical, and social-emotional development using appropriate diagnostic tools. Should intervention be deemed necessary, individualized services are provided to the child and family through a Service Coordinator who guides the family through every aspect of the process, from program entry until the child transitions out by age three. To request an evaluation, please visit our Referral Page.
The Help Me Grow Part C/Early Intervention program has five principle goals, reiterated in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). They include:
- Enhance the development of infants and toddlers with disabilities;
- Reduce the educational costs to society by minimizing the need for special education and related services;
- Maximize the potential for individuals with disabilities to live independent lives in society;
- Enhance the capacity of families to support the development of their children; and,
- Enhance states’ ability to coordinate funding to provide services for infants and toddlers with disabilities.
In addition to these central goals, families enrolled in the Early Intervention program receive numerous services depending on the specific needs of their child. They can include:
- Nutrition services
- Occupational therapy
- Physical therapy
- Psychological services
- Speech-language pathology and audiology services
- Vision Services
- Developmental screenings, evaluations and ongoing assessments
- Assistive Technology
- Social Work services
- Other specialized services facilitated by the family’s Service Coordinator