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Schools are required to provide hearing screenings to all children. American Academy of Audiology (2011) screening guidelines suggest children have a hearing screening:

  • When enrolling in school for the first time.
  • In grades 1, 3, 5, and either 7 or 9.
  • If the student is new to the district.
  • If the student is in the process of special education eligibility.
  • Screenings can be administered by an experienced tester, which ideally would be audiologists, speech language pathologists and school nurses.
  • Parents are notified of the non-passing results and the need for further evaluation.
  • If a child does not pass a screening and is referred for a complete audiological evaluation, he or she should be seen within 3 months of the referral by an audiologist.

If your child is deaf or hard of hearing, schools are required to determine the need for additional services. Educational audiologists, speech-language pathologists, or teachers of the deaf and hard of hearing can be requested to be a part of the child’s education team.

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) of 1975 Part B 

  • Part C: Focuses on family-centered, home-based services for children birth to 3 years.
  • Part B: Focuses on school-based services for children 3-21 years.

Individualized Family Service Plans (IFSP)

  • Developed in collaboration with the family AND early interventionists.
  • Provides details on home-based services an individual infant or toddler will need.

Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) 

  • Should be developed in coordination between the family and school personnel.
  • Provides details about the individualized specialized instruction and related services an individual child will need.

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act (ADA) 

  • Can be used if your child is mainstreamed, meaning in the regular classroom all day.
  • Provides requirements an individual child may need to provide access to academic instruction including services and accommodations, such as hearing assistive technology (HAT) systems, interpreters and captions.
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