In our Head Start and Early Head Start programs, at least ten percent of our enrollment slots are for children with disabilities. We offer a full range of services to ensure these children will be as successful as the other children in our program.

These services include special education, health, social services, parent involvement, mental health, nutrition, and case management. Children suspected of having a disabling condition and/or children with a disability are carefully assessed to determine what services might be necessary. For each child we assist, we make an Individual Education Plan (IEP) or an Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP) which provides support for their transition into Head Start and later into their local school district.

How do I know if my child needs a special program?

If your child has demonstrated a problem with prevents him or her from functioning effectively in a general school program without special assistance, then your child might be eligible for a special education program.

If I have a child with special needs, at what age do I notify the district that my child may need special services?

Notify your teacher or Site Supervisor as soon as possible, or the office of the Disabilities @ (925)427-8853.

If I want my child assessed for special problems that I am concerned about, where do I seek help?

Contact your teacher or the Site Supervisor. If your child is not yet attending school, call the local Unified School District, and ask for the Student Services or Special Education Department.

How do I know if my child is eligible for special education services? Who determines needs?

A multi-disciplinary assessment team determines a child’s eligibility and needs with input from the child’s parents and teacher. Together they will determine the child’s special education needs, and will develop an Individualized Education Plan (IEP).

If I am not happy with my child’s special education placement, what can I do?

Call your center’s Site Supervisor to request that the IEP Team review the IEP for alternatives.

How long will my child receive special education?

A child who is eligible for services receives special education assistance as long as the IEP team and parents agree that special assistance is needed. This will be based on the on-going evaluation of your child’s needs.

Are there special education preschool services available?

Yes, three and four year old preschool needs are assessed by multi-disciplinary team with input from the child’s parents. An IEP team meeting, including the parents, is held to determine the child’s program. A number of options are available. Local School Districts also provide services for a limited number of toddlers under the age of three.

If I want to visit the school program or my child’s class, what procedure do I follow?

Call the center your child attends. The center staff will help arrange a convenient time for both you and the teacher.

If I am not happy with my child’s present progress in school, whom do I contact first? If I still do not get the situation solved satisfactorily, do whom can I speak?

First, contact your child’s teacher. If you are not able to resolve the problem, then speak to the Site Supervisor. If you are still unable to resolve your concerns, and believe your child needs special education services, you may refer your child for assessment to determine if a special education program is appropriate.

If I want to schedule a conference about by child’s progress what can I do?

Contact your child’s teacher.

If I feel my child needs special counseling, what do I do?

Contact your child’s teacher or Site Supervisor. The Disabilities or Mental Health Manager may assist as well.

Whom do I contact if I want to do volunteer work for the special education classes?

Call the Site Supervisor or teacher at the center where your child attends.

What if my child’s physical impairment or health problems cause him to miss school regularly?

Your child’s teacher and Children’s Services Manager will work together with an IEP team to plan an appropriate program. If there is an extended absence, home teachers are available, if appropriate.

What if my child needs to be give medication at school?

Medication must be given under the school’s supervision with written medical authorization. It is your responsibility to get the medication to school. It cannot be transported on the school bus.

Under what circumstances will my child receive special transportation?

Special arrangements will be make if the School District IEP team determines that age, disabling condition, or distance prevents your child going from home to school.