Developmental Delayed

Developmental Delayed


Occurs in students, ages three though five, who are functioning at, or lower than, 75% of the normal rate of development in two or more of the following areas:

  • Cognition

  • Physical development including gross motor and/or fine motor skills

  • Communication

  • Social/emotional/affective development

  • Self-help skills


The student will have to meet the following criteria:

  1. Exhibits characteristics consistent with the definition

  2. Needs special education

Special Considerations:

  1. Special education and related services for the eligible students will be provided as of the students’ third birthday when eligibility is determined prior to the third birthday

  2. The district will participate in transition planning conferences that are arranged by the lead agency for Part C

  3. When a student transfers form Part C early intervention program, an interagency transition plan must be developed to assure that by the time the student turns three years of age they will have an IEP or an Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP) which meets the needs of Policy 2419

  4. When a student turns three years old in the spring/summer, the district is responsible for implementation of the IEP or IFSP services

  5. If appropriate, when a student turns three years of age in the fall they may begin Part B services under their local agency at the beginning of the school year preceding their third birthday

  6. If the developmental delay is the result in vision and/or hearing loss, eligibility shall be determined under that exceptionally if the student meets the eligibility requirements for that exceptionality

  7. When a student turns six years of age, they no longer meet the eligibility criteria for developmental delay. The IEP team must follow procedures for reevaluation and reconvene the eligibility committee prior to the student’s sixth birthday to determine eligibility under another exceptionality


Students who may have a developmental delay often experience difficulty with the following:

  • Completing everyday tasks (walking, running, getting dressed)

  • Learning new information, appropriate for the students’ age

  • Expressing wants and needs

  • Engaging in coordinated attention

  • Engaging in appropriate verbal and nonverbal behaviors across settings

Strategies for home:

  • Plan activities for times when the child has the most energy

  • Incorporate singing and dancing into activities

  • Use short simple sentences to ensure your child can comprehend the information

  • Model all activities

  • Give immediate praise

  • Have open communication between the home/school

Strategies for School:

  • Give the students’ plenty of time to complete tasks and allow them practice time

  • Break down tasks into smaller steps

  • Demonstrate what you want the student to do

  • Use visuals

  • Repeat directions

  • Have an encouraging and supportive learning environment

  • Have open communication with the students’ parents