Child Find

Child Find in Michigan

Child Find is the component of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Section 504 that requires all states to locate, identify, and evaluate as early as possible all infants, toddler, children and youth residing in the state who may be eligible for early intervention and/or special education services.

Early On® Public Awareness

For infants and toddlers in Michigan, birth to three (3) years of age, the federally funded system of early intervention services under Part C of IDEA is Early On® Michigan. Early On® Public Awareness (EOPA) is responsible for child find activities for Early On® Michigan.  EOPA is funded by Part C of IDEA through a grant from the Michigan Department of Education, Office of Early Childhood Education and Family Services.                   1-800-EarlyOn (327-5966)


Project Find

For children and youth in Michigan, three (3) to 26 years of age, Special Education provides support and resources so that students may better participate and learn in classroom settings. Special Education follows regulars and policy under Part B of IDEA and Michigan's Administrative Rules for Special Education. Project Find is responsible for child find activities for Special Education in Michigan. Project Find is funded by Part B of IDEA through a grant from the Michigan Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Early Intervention Services.

www.ProjectFind           1-800-252-0052


The Process

Early On® Public Awareness and Project Find encourage referral of children and youth who may be eligible for Early On® or Special Education to central toll-free number or to intermediate school district through multiple strategies, including:

  1. Strategic implementation of statewide media campaigns, utilizing billboards, radio, television and other advertising;
  2. Development and dissemination of materials which describe how to make a referral, including brochures, posters, information on child development, and the federally-required central directory, " Early On® Michigan Resources for Infants and Toddlers" in collaboration with the Center for Educational Networking.
  3. Outreach to primary referral sources by presenting and displaying at professional conferences, especially those for physicians, child care providers, health care works and parents;
  4. Support to intermediate school district personnel who must carry out responsibilities, including: appointment of Child Find Coordinators, development of ISD plans for child find, and the location, identification, and evaluation of eligible children and youth.
  5. Other support to local child find efforts through loaner display boards for use at local community events, graphic design assistance and convening of Michigan Child Find Coordinators for technical assistance and policy updates;
  6. Operations of 1-800-EARLYON and 1-800-252-0052 by qualified personnel who listen to callers, collect information about the child, and send referrals, as appropriate, to intake personnel at local service areas and intermediate school districts.

These strategies target parents and professionals who work with children and youth who may be eligible for services. Referral personnel advise callers that they should hear from a local agency within 10 days. After processing referrals, through weekly reports, Early On® Public Awareness and Project Find verify that referrals are received. Local service areas and intermediate school districts evaluate children and youth to determine eligibility for early intervention and special education services.