Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education


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Subject: Evaluations/Referrals for Children Prior to Age Three

Source: CJ Hubbard, Assistant Director (Part C), Compliance

Intended Audience: SPOEs, Service Coordinators, ECSE Staff, Special Education Directors

Date: June 25, 2008

We want to remind school districts that pursuant to state and federal regulations implementing the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) you must ensure that a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) is available for all eligible children no later than the third birthday and an IEP in effect by that date.

IDEA Part B Compliance Standards (200.10) address the process and timelines associated with both parent referrals and for children receiving services in the First Steps system.  School district ECSE programs have an obligation to accept and act on parent referrals for children who are within 120 days of the third birthday and should not postpone them until the child turns three.  Parents presenting with a child younger than 2 years 8 months should be referred to First Steps.

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Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
Division of Special Education
P.O. Box 480
Jefferson City, MO 65102
Email:  webreplyspe@dese.mo.gov
Phone: 573-751-5739   Fax:  573-526-4404


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