Preschool Children with a Disability
As defined by the Ohio Department of Education (Whose Idea is This?),
these are children who are experiencing significant delays in one or more of
the following critical areas and, for that reason, need special education and
- physical development: fine and gross motor skills
- cognitive development
- communication development
- social or emotional development
- adaptive behavior: self-help skills
Assessment/Evaluation Procedures for Preschoolers with a Suspected
- Referral for Evaluation: At the preschool level, the parent(s) must initiate
the referral for a child to be evaluated. The evaluation team will take information from the parent in order to inform the next steps in the evaluation process. The evaluation team will ask the parent(s) to provide the information and may ask for written
reports from other professionals that may have valuable knowledge regarding the
child's development (pediatricians, private therapists, etc.). During the referral process, parent(s) will be asked about their child's current areas of difficulty, child's medical history, family history, child's educational history, etc. Parents are also required to register their child with the Parma City School District in order to complete the referral process and begin the evaluation process. When enrolling their child, parents will need their child's birth certificate, immunization records, proof of residency and custody papers (if applicable.)
- Multi-factored Evaluation (MFE): A variety of evaluative procedures are used to determine if a child qualifies as having a disability that impacts their education. During the evaluation, a team is assembled to complete the evaluation process. The team consists of a licensed school psychologist, the child's parent(s)/guardian(s), a special education teacher, the early childhood coordinator, school nurse and may include any of the following personnel according to the child's suspected areas of need: speech-language pathologist, occupational therapist, physical therapist, vision specialist, and/or any other related service staff members pertinent to understanding the child's development. A combination of formal assessment tools and a play-based assessment session may be implemented by the team during the evaluation process according to the child's strengths and needs.
- Evaluation Team Report (ETR): This is a written document that provides the parent(s) the results from the child's Multi-Factored evaluation. A copy of this report is
provided to parents at no cost through the Parma City School District. A member
of the evaluation team arranges a meeting with parent(s) to review results from
the completed evaluation. At this time the Multi-Factored Evaluation team
focuses on the child's strengths, needs, and eligibility to receive special education services.
If your child qualifies as a preschooler with a disability, an Individualized Education Program (IEP) will
be developed. This IEP will detail your child's current progress, educational areas of need and educational goals, the least restrictive environment in which the child will receive services, as well as the related services (speech, OT, PT, etc.) the child will receive, and much more.