Part B, Section 619
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Acknowledging the importance of providing services to young children with disabilities,
Congress established the Part C Early Intervention Program and revised the Part B, Section 619 Preschool Special Education Program when the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) was reauthorized in 1986.
It is well documented that the beginning years of all children’s lives are critical for building the early foundations of learning and wellness needed for success in school and later in life. During these years, children’s brains develop rapidly, influenced by the experiences they share with their families, teachers, peers, and in their communities. Like all children, it is critical for children with disabilities to be exposed to a variety of rich experiences where they can learn in the context of play and everyday interactions and engage with their peers with and without disabilities. U. S. Dept of Health and Human Services and U. S. Department of Education Policy Statement, 2015)
The IDEA Part B provisions and requirements apply to children with disabilities ages three through twenty-one who are served under their state’s Part B system, consistent with each state’s determined age range. Section 619 of IDEA authorizes an additional preschool formula grant for states that are eligible for grants under Section 611 of Part B if the state makes available free appropriate public education (FAPE) to all children with disabilities ages three through five in the state. If consistent with state policy, IDEA funds may be used to provide services to two-year old children with disabilities who will turn three during the school year. The specific Section 619 provisions of IDEA primarily detail the allocation of the 619 funding for state and local programs, and state-level administration and activities to support children with disabilities ages three through five.
State Part B data reporting requirements under Section 618, generally include children who are preschool aged where appropriate. Three reporting requirements are specific only to preschool children. These are information collected on preschool children’s educational environments, child outcomes, and for children who received services under Part C Early Intervention, timely transition to preschool special education. The U.S. Department of Education is required to report annually to the U.S Congress on the progress made toward the provision of a free appropriate public education to all children with disabilities including preschoolers. The report may be found at: https://www2.ed.gov/about/reports/annual/osep/index.html.
Please visit the Welcome to the World of IDEA Part B, Section 619 on the OSEP Collaboration Spaces for a full list of resources and tools to get started.