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Special Needs Criteria

Who Qualifies for Early Intervention Services? 

There are legal eligibility criteria children must meet in order to receive services. A summary of these criteria are provided below.


Infant Toddler Program has two basic categories:
Developmental Delay There is a significant difference (at least 30% in one area or 25% in two areas) between the skills a child actually shows at the time of assessment and skill levels generally shown by other children the same age.
Established Conditions A child is considered to have an established condition if the child has a diagnosed physical or mental condition which has a high probability of resulting in developmental delay.
For additional information, contact the Early Intervention Branch of the Division of Public Health at 919.707.5520 or visit


The Preschool Program
  • Based on Parental consent
  • 3, 4, and PreK 5 year olds with identified need determined by the Individual Education Program (IEP) Team resulting from parental report, observation and evaluation results conducted by qualified professional in accordance with the North Carolina Policies Governing Services for Children with Disabilities
  • The delay or disability must have a adverse effect on educational performance in the general curriculum and require specialized instruction so that the child may progress in the regular early childhood program
  • Income is not considered for participation in the program.
For additional information, contact Dr. Vivian James, Preschool Disabilities Consultant, 619 Coordinator, Office of early Learning at 919-218-8384 or email, Dr. Norman Allard, Exceptional Children Preschool Consultant, Office of Early Learning at 919-807-3691 or email

For more information on the Early Intervention Program, visit North Carolina Early Intervention Services at




2201 Mail Service Center | Raleigh, NC 27699-2200
919-814-6300 | 1-800-859-0829 (In State Only)

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