Funds allocated under this program can be used to:
(1) maintain and implement the statewide system described above;
(2) fund direct early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families that are not otherwise provided by other public or private sources;
(3) expand and improve services that are otherwise available;
(4) provide a free appropriate public education, in accordance with Part B of the IDEA, to children with disabilities from their third birthday to the beginning of the following school year;
(5) with the written consent of the parents, continue to provide early intervention services to children with disabilities aged three and older under IDEA sections 632(5)(B)(ii) and 635(c), and
(6) initiate, expand, or improve collaborative efforts related to identifying, evaluating, referring, and following up on at-risk infants and toddlers in States that do not provide direct services for at-risk children.
IDEA Part C ARRA funds may be used for any allowable purpose under Part C of the IDEA. In addition, the increased appropriations for FY 2009 under the ARRA triggered the IDEA provisions relating to reservation of funds for the Part C State Incentive Grants program. The Part C ARRA funding for State Incentive Grants provides funds to State lead agencies that elect to serve children three years of age until entrance into elementary school.
The Department has identified the following examples of specific projects that grantees might consider to achieve the objectives of the ARRA:
• Provide in-service training on evidence-based practices to EIS program staff and EIS providers to ensure that infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families receive high quality early intervention services in a timely manner.
• Expand child-find activities to ensure that all states meet their performance targets related to serving infants under age one and infants and toddlers birth through age two.
• Develop intensive programs and initiatives to train and support families, including families whose primary language is not English, in working with their infants and toddlers with disabilities and effectively communicating their children's needs.
• Support development of high quality state and local data systems to collect valid and reliable data for use in improving the timely delivery of early intervention services, the transition of children receiving services under Part C to the Part B preschool program, the tracking of early childhood outcome data as children exit the program and enter preschool and school, and in meeting data reporting requirements on the state's and EIS programs' performance on early childhood priority areas.
• Obtain state-of-the art assistive technology devices and provide training to qualified personnel on the use of such devices to support the functional development of infants and toddlers with disabilities.
• Implement innovative program strategies for improving the statewide services program, such as web-based systems for developing Individualized Family Service Plans and transition plans for toddlers with disabilities as they exit the Part C program.
• Purchase equipment for use by qualified personnel such as occupational and speech therapists to increase their ability to provide effective services.
• Develop and implement a joint state policy to provide early intervention services with other early childhood and related programs in the state.