Early Childhood Special Education Services

The Agency of Education has overarching responsibility for compliance with the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the corresponding Vermont state regulations regarding the provision of a Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) for students with disabilities. To accomplish this task, the Agency of Education employs a team of highly skilled professionals charged with assuring that all Vermont public and independent schools and early childhood education programs educate students with disabilities consistent with the content and intent of the law.

Early Childhood Special Education Services (ECSES) supports children ages 3 up to 6 years. ECSES is administered through local school districts to ensure access and participation in early childhood programs for each and every child who is determined eligible for services. ECSES enables young children with disabilities to be full participants in everyday routines and activities across a variety of settings (in their homes with their families, in child care, preschool or school programs, and in the community) throughout the early childhood years.

New or Revised Guidance

  • Indicator 12 SPP/APR Reporting (IDEA Part C to Part B Transition)
    AOE learning modules are designed to support individuals as an orientation to a new topic or to refresh existing knowledge and skills. The purpose of the module: IDEA Part C to Part B Transition and Reporting is to help Administrators, Special Education Directors, and Early Childhood Special Educators in defining and clarifying the transition reporting requirements for children who are transitioning from IDEA Part C services to IDEA Part B services.


Early Childhood Outcomes

ECSES defines the three early childhood outcomes as functional outcomes.

  • Outcome A: Positive Social and Emotional Skills and Relationships
  • Outcome B:  Acquisition and use of Knowledge and Skills
  • Outcome C: Taking appropriate actions to meet needs

Functional outcomes describe children's mastery and appropriate application of behaviors, knowledge, and skills in an intentional and meaningful way across daily routines, activities and settings. The overarching goal for each and every child is to be an active and successful participant in his/her own learning and development.

ECSES measures three early childhood outcomes as defined by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) in the State Performance Plan (SPP) and Annual Performance Report (APR). The three early childhood outcomes are the result of the work of the Early Childhood Outcomes Center which is now part of the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA)

Vermont’s ECSES’ Early Childhood Outcomes Practices and Procedures aims to assist professionals in identifying and developing an understanding of the early childhood outcomes process and measurement system. The purpose of the ECSES’ early childhood outcomes measurement is to collect and analyze high-quality child outcomes data to meet federal reporting requirements as well as to inform state and local program improvement efforts, including:

  • Improving policies, procedures, and practices;
  • Informing focused monitoring and quality assurance;
  • Informing professional learning opportunities;
  • Informing research and funding; and
  • Gathering philanthropic and political support for early childhood special education services.

Practices and Procedures Memo to the Field (March 2018)

Part C Regional Interagency Agreements

Use the Part C Regional Interagency Agreement (IAA) ‘fillable’ form to ensure the provision of a Part C Comprehensive Child Find System as well as to support a smooth and effective transition for children with disabilities and their families who transition from Children's Integrated Services/Early Intervention (CIS/EI) services to Part B services at age three. The role and responsibilities of the regional CIS/EI program and LEAs shall be detailed and maintained through this agreement. Each regional IAA team, which is comprised of LEA and CIS/EI designees, shall develop, implement and maintain a regional IAA that is consistent with federal and state special education rules and the state Part C Interagency Agreement.

Additional Resources:

IDEA Part C to B Transition Guidance and Implementation of ‘Potentially Eligible’ at Age 3

These documents will provide additional guidance from the Agency of Education and the Agency of Human Services, Department for Children and Families in implementation of the newly revised Vermont Special Education Rule 2360.5. The guidance focuses on children exiting Children’s Integrated Services/Early Intervention services and who may be ‘Potentially Eligible’ for Part B Early Childhood Special Education services at age 3. Implementation of this section of the rule began on November 15th, 2013.

Additional Resources:


Email Kate Rogers, Early Education Programs Manager or call (802) 828-5042.

Email Katie McCarthy, ECSE Coordinator II/IDEA 619 or call (802) 828-5213.

Email Amy Murphy, Early Education Inclusion Coordinator or call (802) 828-5387.

Contact Us

Vermont Agency of Education
Secretary Daniel M. French
1 National Life Drive, Davis 5
Montpelier, VT 05620-2501

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