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Legal Requirements for Evaluation and Assessment:


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How is a child’s eligibility for early intervention services determined?

State Eligibility Criteria, Federal Regulations [Sec. 303.300]


Summary
Provision defines criteria and procedures to be used in determining a child’s eligibility for early intervention services, including the use of informed clinical opinion.

 

Each statewide system of early intervention services must include the eligibility criteria and procedures, consistent with Sec. 303.16 (see definition of infant and toddler with disability), to be used by the state in carrying out programs under this part of the law.

(a) The State shall define developmental delay by--


(1) Describing, for each of five developmental areas (physical, communication, social/emotional, adaptive and cognitive), the procedures, including the use of informed clinical opinion, that will be used to measure a child's development; and
(2) Stating the levels of functioning or other criteria that constitute a developmental delay in each of those areas.


(b) The State shall describe the criteria and procedures, including the use of informed clinical opinion, that will be used to determine the existence of a condition that has a high probability of resulting in developmental delay under Sec. 303.16(a)(2) (see definition of infant and toddler with disability).

(c) If the State elects to include in its system children who are at risk under Sec. 303.16(b) (see definition of infant and toddler with disability), the State shall describe the criteria and procedures, including the use of informed clinical opinion, that will be used to identify those children.

Note 1: Under this section and Sec. 303.322(c)(2) (using informed clinical opinion during evaluation and assessment), States are required to ensure that informed clinical opinion is used in determining a child's eligibility under this part. Informed clinical opinion is especially important if there are no standardized measures, or if the standardized procedures are not appropriate for a given age or developmental area. If a given standardized procedure is considered to be appropriate, a State's criteria could include percentiles or percentages of levels of functioning on standardized measures.

Evaluation/Assessment, Maryland Regulations [COMAR 13A.13.01.06]
Eligibility


Summary
Maryland’s regulations define “an infant and toddler with disabilities” and add the following requirements about how to determine eligibility.

 

A. Each local lead agency shall develop written policies and procedures consistent with the federal regulations (Sec.303.322, evaluation and assessment) to provide a timely, comprehensive, multidisciplinary evaluation ….

F. Eligibility Determination.

(1) Qualified personnel directly involved in the diagnosis of the child or in conducting the evaluation and assessment of the child shall determine the child's eligibility for early intervention services by comparing evaluation results with the Maryland criteria for infants and toddlers (Regulation .02 of this chapter)

(2) A written statement shall document the eligibility decision and be included in the child's early intervention record. The written statement shall include:

(a) The names and titles of the qualified personnel determining the child's eligibility;
(b) The date of the determination; and
(c) The basis for eligibility determination.

 

 


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