Code Section Group

Education Code - EDC

TITLE 2. ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION [33000 - 64100]

  ( Title 2 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )

DIVISION 4. INSTRUCTION AND SERVICES [46000 - 64100]

  ( Division 4 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )

PART 30. SPECIAL EDUCATION PROGRAMS [56000 - 56865]

  ( Part 30 repealed and added by Stats. 1980, Ch. 797, Sec. 9. )

CHAPTER 4.4. Early Education for Individuals with Exceptional Needs [56425 - 56432]
  ( Chapter 4.4 added by Stats. 1981, Ch. 1094, Sec. 4. )

56425.
  

As a condition of receiving state aid pursuant to this part, a local educational agency that operated early education programs for individuals with exceptional needs younger than three years of age, as defined in Section 56026, and that received state or federal aid for special education for those programs in the 1980–81 fiscal year, shall continue to operate early education programs in the 1981–82 fiscal year and each fiscal year thereafter.

If a local educational agency offered those programs in the 1980–81 fiscal year but in a subsequent year transfers the programs to another local educational agency, the local educational agency shall be exempt from the provisions of this section in any year when the programs are offered by the local educational agency to which they were transferred.

A local educational agency that is required to offer a program pursuant to this section shall be eligible for funding pursuant to Section 56432.

This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Amended by Stats. 2007, Ch. 56, Sec. 67. Effective January 1, 2008.)

56425.5.
  

The Legislature hereby finds and declares that early education programs for infants identified as individuals with exceptional needs that provide educational services with active parent involvement, can significantly reduce the potential impact of many disabling conditions, and positively influence later development when the child reaches schoolage.

Early education programs funded pursuant to Sections 56427, 56428, and 56432 shall provide a continuum of program options provided by a transdisciplinary team to meet the multiple and varied needs of infants and their families. Recognizing the parent as the infant’s primary teacher, it is the Legislature’s intent that early education programs shall include opportunities for the family to receive home visits and to participate in family involvement activities pursuant to Sections 56426.1 and 56426.4. It is the intent of the Legislature that, as an infant grows older, program emphasis would shift from home-based services to a combination of home-based and group services.

It is further the intent of the Legislature that services rendered by state and local agencies serving infants with exceptional needs and their families be coordinated and maximized.

This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Repealed (in Sec. 40) and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 41. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

56426.
  

An early education program shall include services specially designed to meet the unique needs of infants, from birth to three years of age, and their families. The primary purpose of an early education program is to enhance development of the infant. To meet this purpose, the program shall focus upon the infant and his or her family, and shall include home visits, group services, and family involvement activities. Early education programs funded pursuant to Sections 56427, 56428, and 56432 shall include, as program options, home-based services pursuant to Section 56426.1 and home-based and group services pursuant to Section 56426.2, and shall be provided in accordance with the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. Secs. 1431 to 1445, incl.), and the California Early Intervention Services Act, Title 14 (commencing with Section 95000) of the Government Code.

This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Amended by Stats. 1998, Ch. 691, Sec. 43. Effective January 1, 1999.)

56426.1.
  

(a) Home-based early education services funded pursuant to Sections 56427, 56428, and 56432 shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:

(1) Observing the infant’s behavior and development in his or her natural environment.

(2) Presenting activities that are developmentally appropriate for the infant and are specially designed, based on the infant’s exceptional needs, to enhance the infant’s development. Those activities shall be developed to conform with the infant’s individualized family service plan and to ensure that they do not conflict with his or her medical needs.

(3) Modeling and demonstrating developmentally appropriate activities for the infant to the parents, siblings, and other caregivers, as designated by the parent.

(4) Interacting with the family members and other caregivers, as designated by the parent, to enhance and reinforce their development of skills necessary to promote the infant’s development.

(5) Discussing parental concerns related to the infant and the family, and supporting parents in coping with their infant’s needs.

(6) Assisting parents to solve problems, to seek other services in their community, and to coordinate the services provided by various agencies.

(b) The frequency of home-based services shall be once or twice a week, depending on the needs of the infant and the family.

(c) This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Repealed (in Sec. 44) and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 45. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

56426.2.
  

(a) Early education services funded pursuant to Sections 56427, 56428, and 56432 shall be provided through both home visits and group settings with other infants, with or without the parent. Home-based and group services shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:

(1) All services identified in subdivision (a) of Section 56426.1.

(2) Group and individual activities that are developmentally appropriate and specially designed, based on the infant’s exceptional needs, to enhance the infant’s development. Those activities shall be developed to conform with the infant’s individualized family service plan and to ensure that they do not conflict with his or her medical needs.

(3) Opportunities for infants to socialize and participate in play and exploration activities.

(4) Transdisciplinary services by therapists, psychologists, and other specialists as appropriate.

(5) Access to various developmentally appropriate equipment and specialized materials.

(6) Opportunities for family involvement activities, including parent education and parent support groups.

(b) Services provided in a center under this chapter shall not include child care or respite care.

(c) The frequency of group services shall not exceed three hours a day for up to, and including, three days a week, and shall be determined on the basis of the needs of the infant and the family.

(d) The frequency of home visits provided in conjunction with group services shall range from one to eight visits per month, depending on the needs of the infant and the family.

(e) Group services shall be provided on a ratio of no more than four infants to one adult.

(f) Parent participation in group services shall be encouraged.

(g) This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Repealed (in Sec. 46) and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 47. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

56426.25.
  

The maximum service levels set forth in Sections 56426.1 and 56426.2 apply only for purposes of the allocation of funds for early education programs pursuant to Sections 56427, 56428, and 56432, and may be exceeded by a local educational agency, in accordance with the infants’ individualized family service plan, provided that no change in the level of entitlement to state funding under this part thereby results.

This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Amended by Stats. 2007, Ch. 56, Sec. 68. Effective January 1, 2008.)

56426.3.
  

In addition to home-based or home-based and group early education services, related services as defined in Section 300.13 of Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations, as that section read on April 1, 1986, shall be available to infants and their families. Related services may be provided in the home or at the center according to needs of the infant and the family.

(Added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 1296, Sec. 13.5. Operative July 1, 1987, by Sec. 25 of Ch. 1296.)

56426.4.
  

(a) Family involvement activities funded pursuant to Sections 56427, 56428, and 56432 shall support family members in meeting the practical and emotional issues and needs of raising their infant. These activities may include, but are not limited to, the following:

(1) Educational programs that present information or demonstrate techniques to assist the family to promote their infant’s development.

(2) Parent education and training to assist families in understanding, planning for, and meeting the unique needs of their infant.

(3) Parent support groups to share similar experiences and possible solutions.

(4) Instruction in making toys and other materials appropriate to their infant’s exceptional needs and development.

(b) The frequency of family involvement activities shall be at least once a month.

(c) Participation by families in family involvement activities shall be voluntary.

(d) This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Repealed (in Sec. 50) and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 51. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

56426.5.
  

If the transdisciplinary team determines home-based and group early education services to be appropriate, but the parent chooses not to receive home-based services, group services shall be made available to the infant. Similarly, the choice not to participate in family involvement activities shall not limit the availability to the infant and his or her family of home-based services or home-based and group services as determined appropriate by the individualized education program team.

(Amended by Stats. 1993, Ch. 1296, Sec. 17.6. Effective October 11, 1993.)

56426.6.
  

(a) Early education services shall be provided by a local educational agency through a transdisciplinary team consisting of a group of professionals from various disciplines, agencies, and parents who shall share their expertise and services to provide appropriate services for infants and their families. Each team member shall be responsible for providing and coordinating early education services for one or more infants and their families, and shall serve as a consultant to other team members and as a provider of appropriate related services to other infants in the program.

(b) Credentialed personnel with expertise in vision or hearing impairments shall be made available by the local educational agency to early education programs serving infants identified in accordance with paragraph (2), (5), or (13) of subdivision (b) of Section 3030 of Title 5 of the California Code of Regulations, and shall be the primary providers of services under those programs whenever possible.

(c) Transdisciplinary teams may include, but need not be limited to, qualified persons from the following disciplines:

(1) Early childhood special education.

(2) Speech and language therapy.

(3) Nursing, with a skill level not less than that of a registered nurse.

(4) Social work, psychology, or mental health.

(5) Occupational therapy.

(6) Physical therapy.

(7) Audiology.

(8) Parent-to-parent support.

(d) A person who is authorized by the local educational agency to provide early education or related services to infants shall have appropriate experience in normal and atypical infant development and an understanding of the unique needs of families of infants with exceptional needs, or, absent that experience and understanding, shall undergo a comprehensive training plan for that purpose, which plan shall be developed and implemented as part of the staff development component of the local plan for early education services.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 186, Sec. 56. Effective January 1, 2017.)

56426.7.
  

Medically necessary occupational therapy and physical therapy shall be provided to the infant when warranted by medical diagnosis and contained in the individualized family service plan, as specified under Chapter 26.5 (commencing with Section 7570) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the Government Code.

(Amended by Stats. 1994, Ch. 1288, Sec. 13. Effective January 1, 1995.)

56426.8.
  

(a) Early education and related services shall be based on the needs of the infant and the family as determined by the individualized family service plan team, and shall be specified in the individualized family service plan, including the frequency and duration of each type of service. Any early education or related service may be provided only upon written parental consent.

(b) The individualized family service plan for any infant shall be developed in consultation with the infant’s physician in order to ensure that the services specified in the plan do not conflict with the infant’s medical needs.

(Amended by Stats. 1994, Ch. 1288, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 1995.)

56426.9.
  

(a) Pursuant to Section 1437(a)(8) of Title 20 of the United States Code, a local educational agency shall ensure that each child participating in early childhood special education services pursuant to this chapter, and who will participate in preschool programs pursuant to Chapter 4.45 (commencing with Section 56440), experiences a smooth and effective transition to those preschool programs.

(b) Pursuant to Sections 300.101(b) and 300.323(b) of Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations, a local educational agency, by the third birthday of a child described in subdivision (a), shall ensure that an individualized education program or an individualized family service plan has been developed and is being implemented for the child consistent with a free appropriate public education for children beginning at three years of age.

(c) In accordance with Section 1437(a)(8) of Title 20 of the United States Code, a local educational agency shall participate in transition planning conferences arranged by the designated lead agency.

(d) Any child who becomes three years of age while participating in early childhood special education services under this chapter may continue until June 30 of the current program year, if the individualized education program team determines that the preschooler is eligible pursuant to Section 56441.11, develops an individualized education program, and determines that the early childhood special education services remain appropriate. No later than June 30 of that year, the individualized education program team shall meet to review the preschooler’s progress and revise the individualized education program accordingly. The individualized education program team meeting shall be conducted by the local educational agency responsible for the provision of preschool special education services. Representatives of the early childhood special education program shall be invited to that meeting. If a child’s third birthday occurs during the summer, the child’s individualized education program team shall determine the date when services under the individualized education program will begin, pursuant to Section 300.101(b) of Title 34 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(Amended by Stats. 2007, Ch. 56, Sec. 70. Effective January 1, 2008.)

56427.
  

(a) Not less than two million three hundred twenty-four thousand dollars ($2,324,000) of the federal discretionary funds appropriated to the State Department of Education under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. Sec. 1400 et seq.) in any fiscal year shall be expended for early education programs for infants with exceptional needs and their families, until the department determines, and the Legislature concurs, that the funds are no longer needed for that purpose.

(b) Programs ineligible to receive funding pursuant to Section 56425 or 56432 may receive funding pursuant to subdivision (a).

(c) This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Repealed (in Sec. 52) and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 53. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

56428.
  

(a) For the 1985–86 fiscal year, and each fiscal year thereafter, any instructional personnel service unit that was used in the prior fiscal year to provide services to children younger than three years of age shall continue to be used for that purpose. If a special education local plan area becomes ineligible for all or any portion of those instructional personnel service units operated and fundable in the prior fiscal year, the Superintendent of Public Instruction shall allocate those units to another local plan area for the purpose of providing services to children younger than three years of age.

(b) In the 1998–99 fiscal year, the instructional personnel service unit rates used to compute state funding under this chapter shall be adjusted to represent the actual, historic inflation adjustment amount funded for each provider of early education services under this chapter. To make this adjustment, the superintendent shall make the following calculation:

(1) Divide the amount of funding received by the special education local plan area in the 1997–98 fiscal year from property taxes and state aid, after applying the deficit, for early education for individuals with exceptional needs by the amount the special education local plan area was entitled to receive for the 1997–98 fiscal year for that program.

(2) Multiply the amount determined in paragraph (1) by the instructional personnel service unit rates for the 1997–98 fiscal year used to compute state funding for early education for individuals with exceptional needs prior to the application of the inflation adjustment for the 1998–99 fiscal year.

(c) For the 1998–99 fiscal year, the department shall transfer an amount from schedule (a) to schedule (b) of Item 6110-161-0001 of Section 2.00 of the Budget Act of 1998, equal to the amount determined by the department, with the approval of the Department of Finance, to be the amount of funding received by the special education local plan area from property taxes in the 1997–98 fiscal year for early education programs for individuals with exceptional needs, multiplied by the inflation factor computed pursuant to Section 42238.1 for the 1998–99 fiscal year and adjusted for the estimated growth in average daily attendance for kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive, pursuant to the May Revision of the Governor’s Budget for the 1998–99 fiscal year.

(Amended by Stats. 1998, Ch. 330, Sec. 12. Effective August 21, 1998.)

56429.
  

In order to assure the maximum utilization and coordination of local early education services, eligibility for the receipt of funds pursuant to Section 56425, 56427, 56428, or 56432 is conditioned upon the approval by the superintendent of a local plan for early education services, which approval shall apply for not less than one, nor more than four, years. The local plan shall identify existing public and private early education services, and shall include an interagency plan for the delivery of early education services in accordance with the California Early Intervention Services Act, Title 14 (commencing with Section 95000) of the Government Code.

This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Repealed (in Sec. 54) and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 55. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

56430.
  

(a) Early education services may be provided by any of the following methods:

(1) Directly by a local educational agency.

(2) Through an interagency agreement between a local educational agency and another public agency.

(3) Through a contract with another public agency pursuant to Section 56369.

(4) Through a contract with a certified nonpublic, nonsectarian school, or nonpublic, nonsectarian agency pursuant to Section 56366.

(5) Through a contract with a nonsectarian hospital in accordance with Section 56361.5.

(b) Contracts or agreements with agencies identified in subdivision (a) for early education services are strongly encouraged when early education services are currently provided by another agency, and when found to be a cost-effective means of providing the services. The placement of individual infants under the contract shall not require specific approval by the governing board of the district or the county office.

(c) Early education services provided under this chapter shall be funded pursuant to Sections 56427, 56428, and 56432.

(d) This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Repealed (in Sec. 56) and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 57. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

56431.
  

The Superintendent shall develop procedures and criteria to enable a local educational agency to contract with private nonprofit preschools or child development centers to provide special education and related services to infants and preschool age individuals with exceptional needs. The criteria shall include minimum standards that the private, nonprofit preschool or center shall be required to meet.

(Amended by Stats. 2008, Ch. 179, Sec. 65. Effective January 1, 2009.)

56432.
  

(a) For the 1998–99 fiscal year and each fiscal year thereafter, a special education local plan area shall be eligible for state funding of those instructional personnel service units operated and fundable for services to individuals with exceptional needs younger than three years of age at the second principal apportionment of the prior fiscal year, as long as the pupil count of these pupils divided by the number of instructional personnel service units is not less than the following:

(1) For special classes and centers—12, based on the unduplicated pupil count.

(2) For resource specialist programs—24, based on the unduplicated pupil count.

(3) For designated instruction and services—12, based on the unduplicated pupil count, or 39, based on the duplicated pupil count.

(b) A special education local plan area shall be eligible for state funding of instructional personnel service units for services to individuals with exceptional needs younger than three years of age in excess of the number of instructional personnel service units operated and fundable at the second principal apportionment of the prior fiscal year only with the authorization of the superintendent.

(c) The superintendent shall base the authorization of funding for special education local plan areas pursuant to this section, including the reallocation of instructional personnel service units, upon criteria that shall include, but not be limited to, the following:

(1) Changes in the total number of pupils younger than three years of age enrolled in special education programs.

(2) High- and low-average caseloads per instructional personnel service unit for each instructional setting.

(d) Infant programs in special classes and centers funded pursuant to this item shall be supported by two aides, unless otherwise required by the superintendent.

(e) Infant services in resource specialist programs funded pursuant to this item shall be supported by one aide.

(f) When units are allocated pursuant to this subdivision, the superintendent shall allocate only the least expensive unit appropriate.

(g) Notwithstanding Sections 56211 and 56212, a special education local plan area may apply for, and the superintendent may grant, a waiver of any of the standards and criteria specified in this section if compliance would prevent the provision of a free, appropriate public education or would create undue hardship. In granting the waivers, the superintendent shall give priority to the following factors:

(1) Applications from special education local plan areas for waivers for a period not to exceed three years to specifically maintain or increase the level of special education services necessary to address the special education service requirements of individuals with exceptional needs residing in sparsely populated districts or attending isolated schools designated in the application.

(A) Sparsely populated districts are school districts that meet one of the following conditions:

(i) A school district or combination of contiguous school districts in which the total enrollment is less than 600 pupils, kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive, and in which one or more of the school facilities is an isolated school.

(ii) A school district or combination of contiguous school districts in which the total pupil density ratio is less than 15 pupils, kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive, per square mile and in which one or more of the school facilities is an isolated school.

(B) Isolated schools are schools with enrollments of less than 600 pupils, kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive, that meet one or more of the following conditions:

(i) The school is located more than 45 minutes average driving time over commonly used and well-traveled roads from the nearest school, including schools in adjacent special education local plan areas, with an enrollment greater than 600 pupils, kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive.

(ii) The school is separated, by roads that are impassable for extended periods of time due to inclement weather, from the nearest school, including schools in adjacent special education local plan areas, with an enrollment greater than 600 pupils, kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive.

(iii) The school is of a size and location that, when its enrollment is combined with the enrollments of the two largest schools within an average driving time of not more than 30 minutes over commonly used and well-traveled roads, including schools in adjacent special education local plan areas, the combined enrollment is less than 600 pupils, kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive.

(iv) The school is the one of normal attendance for a severely disabled individual, as defined in Section 56030.5, or an individual with a low-incidence disability, as defined in Section 56026.5, who otherwise would be required to be transported more than 75 minutes, average one-way driving time over commonly used and well-traveled roads, to the nearest appropriate program.

(2) The location of licensed children’s institutions, foster family homes, residential medical facilities, or similar facilities that serve children younger than three years of age and are within the boundaries of a local plan if 3 percent or more of the local plan’s unduplicated pupil count resides in those facilities.

(h) By authorizing units pursuant to this section, the superintendent shall not increase the statewide total number of instructional personnel service units for purposes of state apportionments unless an appropriation specifically for growth in the number of instructional personnel service units is made in the annual Budget Act or other legislation. If that growth appropriation is made, units authorized by the superintendent pursuant to this section are subject to the restrictions that the units shall be funded only by that growth appropriation and no other funds may be apportioned for the units.

(i) The superintendent shall monitor the use of instructional personnel service units retained or authorized by the granting of waivers pursuant to subdivision (h) to ensure that the instructional personnel service units are used in a manner wholly consistent with the basis for the waiver request.

(j) This section shall become operative on July 1, 1998.

(Added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 854, Sec. 58. Effective January 1, 1998. Section operative July 1, 1998, by its own provisions.)

EDCEducation Code - EDC