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How do I get my child speech (and/or language) therapy in the public schools? What age do they have to be to get started? We address families’ burning questions right here.
All children with disabilities beginning at the age of 3, have a right to a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) as mandated by the IDEA Act of 2004. Many school districts in our state offer a variety of services and placement settings. Though accommodations and specialized instruction may vary from district to district, A child may qualify in the following areas, as defined in 34 CFR 34 §300.8
Your local school district can provide this evaluation by parent request, which is considered “Child Find”. You may contact your local school district to request this evaluation; it may also be conducted after your child turns 3 if they are already receiving Sooner Start services.
Districts also offer related services. Related services for most districts include occupational therapy, speech therapy, audiology, counseling, psychological and health services as well as transportation.
The fastest way to determine if your child is eligible is contacting your local school district’s Special Services Department. Below we have included links and phone numbers to local school districts in our area.
Children who are receiving Sooner Start services will transition to services at their local school district on/before their 3rd birthday if they meet eligibility criteria (and that their Sooner Start therapist should be assisting with this as well). They assist with contacting the school district and determine eligibility for any services they have been receiving (speech, OT, cognitive, etc.) and collaborate with the school IEP team.
Private schools function separately from state regulations and public schools services. Families attending private schools are encouraged to reach out to the schools principals to determine what services are provided and/or how private services can collaborate with the school.
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