About the Child Find Project

This Child Find Project Website was created to offer information and resources related to the earliest possible identification of young children and their families who may benefit from early intervention and special education services. Child Find is a component of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) that requires states to have a comprehensive system to locate, identify, and refer as early as possible all children with disabilities, aged birth to 21, for early intervention or special education services. Infants and toddlers with disabilities (birth-2 years of age) and their families receive early intervention services under IDEA Part C. Children and youth (ages 3-21) receive special education and related services under IDEA Part B.

In Illinois, the Child Find Project provides free public awareness services as part of the comprehensive Child Find system. The goal of the Child Find Project is to educate the public about the importance of early intervention and early childhood special education services for eligible children as early as possible in their development. The Child Find Project develops and disseminates informational education materials, and resource and service information to Illinois school districts, early intervention providers, health care providers, families, child care providers, educators, families and the general public. Through the distribution of this educational material, the Child Find Project assists professionals with meeting Child Find mandates as required by IDEA. In Illinois, the Illinois State Board of Education is the lead agency for Preschool Special Education IDEA Part B services, and the Illinois Department of Human Services is the lead agency for IDEA Part C services. The Child Find Project is funded entirely by federal IDEA Part B discretionary dollars.

Much of the information and many of the links listed on this website can be useful in conducting Child Find for all young children, not just Child Find for infants and toddlers.