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Learning Disabilities

A neurological disorder that affects one or more of the basic psychological processes involved in understanding or in using spoken or written language. The disability may manifest itself in an imperfect ability to listen, think, speak, read, write, spell or to do mathematical calculations. Learning disabilities should not be confused with learning problems which are primarily the result of visual, hearing, or motor handicaps; of intellectual disabilities; or of emotional disturbance.

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Learning Disabilities

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Early Intervention Program

The New York State Early Intervention Program (EIP) is part of the nationwide EIP. It is for infants and toddlers under three years of age who may not be making progress like other children because of a developmental delay or disability. A disability means that a child has a diagnosed physical or mental condition that may lead to developmental problems. These include, but are not limited to, autism, Down syndrome, motor disorders, or vision and hearing problems. A developmental delay means a child is behind in some area of development, such as growth, learning and thinking, or communicating.

The first step is your child's referral to the EIP in the county where you live. All counties in New York State (NYS) and New York City have an EIP. Children who may need services must first be referred to the EIP. Parents can refer their own child to the EIP if they have a concern about their child's development. In NYS, certain professionals are required to refer children to the EIP if a developmental problem is suspected. After referral, your child will be evaluated by qualified professionals. Your county EIP or the New York City EIP will help you get services if your child is found to be eligible. Health insurance, including private insurance and Medicaid, may be used to pay for early intervention services. EIP services must be provided at no cost to you and will not affect your insurance coverage.

View Early Intervention Programs using our MSNavigator Mapping Tool.

 

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Essential Skills to Getting a Job

The "Essential Skills to Getting a Job: What Young People with Disabilities Need to Know" brochure describes essential competencies that young people to enter the workforce.

 

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Evaluation Basics

This web page provides comprehensive information about the evaluation process. Some of the topics include:

  • Understanding the Full Evaluation Process
  • 6 Steps for Requesting a School Evaluation
  • The Evaluation Process: What to Expect
  • FAQs about Evaluations for Learning and Attention Issues
  • At a Glance: Who's on the Evaluation Team at Your Child's School
  • 7 Steps to take Before Requesting a Formal Evaluation
  • Is a Functional Assessment the Same thing as a Formal Evaluation? and more...

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Every Student Present Website

This website provides a multitude of information to help children succeed in schools. It addresses topics like:

and MUCH more!

Every Student Present is a public awareness intended to help families, school leaders and communities understand the importance of consistent school attendance and the impact of absences of children's learning, especially young students. The goals of the campaign are to promote awareness of chronic absence and to build capacity among schools, families and communities to reduce it.

There is also an entire section of the website with information and resources for educators and community coalitions.

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Everything You Need to Know About OPWDD Eligibility

This series of videos gives an introduction to the OPWDD eligibility process, and process for obtaining services. 

  • What is OPWDD, where to start and what is eligibility? Basic introduction to accessing services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in New York. Introduces Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) and the concept of eligibility for OPWDD funded services.
  • What is needed to apply for OPWDD eligibility? Discusses evaluations required for applying for eligibility and steps required for submitting paperwork to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD).

  • Eligibility attained, what now? Once a person has established eligibility, what are the next steps? How do you access services? What services are there?

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Frequently Asked Questions about Special Education

This webpage answers many frequently asked questions regarding special education issues - accommodations and modifications, advocacy, damages, discipline, due process hearings, progress, reading, parent-school relations, high-stakes testing, retention, No Child Left Behind, and other topics. You will find answers to many of your questions here.

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Getting Help for Struggling Students

This tip sheet highlights a variety of resources available to students who need help with school. It includes information on Supplemental Educational Services (SES); Academic Intervention Services (AIS); P-3 Letters; and private tutoring programs.

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Growing Up Healthy Hotline

The Department of Health operates the Growing Up Healthy Hotline, which provides information about health care, nutrition and other health and human services. The hotline provides information and referral 24 hours/day, seven days a week in English and Spanish and other languages.

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Guide to Transition Services

This is a guide to assist in the transition process for youth with disabilities and their families. Topics include: definitions of IEP; categories of transition services; post-secondary goal; the rights of students and parents; and advocacy tips. The guide also includes a list of transition services and supports in New York City and transition planning timeline.

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IDEAs that Work

This website provides helpful resources for special education teachers and families of children with disabilities.

Developed by the Council on Children and Families and Funded by the Developmental Disabilities Planning Council