CCISD provides services for preschool students

Children grow and develop at different rates, but most will meet many milestones between ages 3 and 5 that will prepare them for kindergarten.

Developmental milestones can help to identify if a child may have a delay in specific areas including communication, motor skills, problem solving, personal/social skills, and self-help skills.

Build Up Michigan is an early intervention campaign in Michigan devoted to helping preschool-aged children 3-5 years old, along with their parents and the caregivers/teachers that work with them, to get additional educational support to learn the skills needed to enter kindergarten.

Build Up is dedicated to supporting the child find mandate of the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA). Build Up targets public awareness to support and locate children aged 3-5 who may be in need of special education supports and services.

The Copper Country ISD is responsible for providing this service for preschool-aged children in Baraga, Houghton and Keweenaw counties. We provide services in the preschool setting, at home, at daycare and in other natural settings.

In Michigan, eligible children may receive special educational services from birth through 25 years of age. This is a free program for children who meet the eligibility requirements in one of the categories for special education.

Anyone can make a referral to Build Up Michigan for an evaluation of a child if it is suspected that the child is developmentally delayed or has a physical or medical condition highly associated with a developmental delay. Most referrals come from parents, preschool centers, daycare providers, physicians and public health agencies.

When a referral is received, a REED (reevaluation of evaluation and educational data) is created with information about the child. After consent is given, the child is assigned to an Early Childhood Special Education teacher and other service providers.

These providers could include speech and language pathologists, physical therapists, occupational therapists, school social workers, or school psychologists who are needed to complete the evaluation process.

In order for a child to receive services, they need to meet Michigan’s administrative rules for special education. There are 12 different areas of eligibility that a child aged 3-5 could possibly be eligible for support.

The early childhood provider will work with the family to write an individualized education program, often referred to as an IEP. The child’s strengths and delays are used to write goals to meet the child’s needs. The services are then provided in the home or in a community location that works best for the family.

Build Up Michigan focuses on the development of a child’s ability to interact socially, get their wants and needs met and to gain knowledge and use new skills. Intervening as early as possible can, in many cases, resolve or at least limit a child’s roadblock to developing key milestones by age 5.

If a child you know is struggling or has a physical, emotional, behavioral or communication delay that could prevent success in school, or if you have questions about the services the CCISD offers, please call Jennifer Beaudette, early childhood coordinator at the Copper Country ISD at 906-482-4250 ext. 175.

George Stockero Jr. is superintendent of the Copper Country Intermediate School District.

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