Project Child Find is underway in Scotland County

By: Staff report

LAURINBURG — An effort is underway to identify Scotland County children with disabilities and need special education and related services.

Project Child Find was created to help youth from birth through age 21 who have disabilities. The effort, also, includes highly mobile children with disabilities (such as migrant and homeless children) and children who are suspected of being a child with a disability and in need of special education, even though they are advancing from grade to grade.

The local effort is part of a concentrated statewide effort to find children who need special help that they are not currently receiving.

Project Child Find is also an endeavor to inform the parent and/or guardian of these children about services available from their local school system and other state and community agencies. The collection and use of data to meet the requirements of Project Child Find are subject to the confidentiality requirements.

Help is available for children with special needs, according to William J. Hussey, director of the Department of Public Instruction’s Exceptional Children Division. The help includes a complete evaluation, an individualized education program designed specifically for the child and a referral to other agencies providing special services.

Project Child Find is looking for children and youth who have been diagnosed or are suspected to have intellectual, physical or emotional disabilities and are unable to benefit from a regular school program without special assistance.

Parents are urged to contact: the school superintendent, the Exceptional Children director, principal or the Department of Public Instruction’s Exceptional Children Division.

“We need the help of all citizens in this effort to find children and youth who could benefit from special services,” Hussey said. “Without this help, a child with a disability may not be found. The right to a free appropriate public education is guaranteed to every child with a disability, ages 3-21.”

For information, call the Scotland school system at 910-276-1138 or North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, Exceptional Children Division, 919-807-3966.

Staff report