We hope that your relationship with your child’s service provider is a positive one. Hear 2 Learn takes the quality of service delivery very seriously. We have established a solid recruitment practice, supervision structure, and anonymous family survey to ensure that the quality of service is maintained and is considered best practice for your child’s needs.
Early Intervention (EI) is a federally and state mandated program that provides special education and therapy services to children from ages birth to three who are found to have a disability. Services include therapies (speech and language, physical therapy, occupational, audiological), special education instruction, teachers of the hearing impaired, respite, family training, counseling and others based upon child and family needs.
At Hear 2 Learn, our evaluators schedule their own evaluations, which can take place at your home or your child’s educational setting. Visit our Preschool Evaluation Process page to find out more information on how the process works.
If your child is birth to 3 years, he/she can receive Early Intervention (EI) services through the Onondaga County Health Department. EI provides your family with a service coordinator and a range of services and supports. You, your service coordinator and the clinicians who have evaluated your child will develop an Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP). For EI information and referral call the EI intake coordinator at 315-435-3230.
If your child is 3 or 4 years of age, he or she may be eligible for Preschool Special Education services which are accessed through your school district’s Committee on Preschool Special Education (CPSE) office. You, the CPSE and the clinicians who have evaluated your child will develop an Individualized Education Plan (IEP). For more information, contact your school district.
There are no out of pocket expenses for early intervention or preschool special education evaluations or services.
The following is a list of people you may encounter, and a short description of their job responsibilities.
- Audiologist: A professional who tests your child’s hearing and prescribes the appropriate hearing aids.
- Occupational Therapist: Helps the child develop upper-body strength and fine motor skills. Also helps children who have difficulty with sensory integration.
- Early Intervention Service Coordinator: Obtains services recommended on the IFSP (e.g., a speech therapist), completes necessary paperwork and supports the family during the Early Intervention Process.
- Special Educator: A teacher specialist who works to help improve a child's speech, language, or developmental issues and integrate them successfully into the classroom.
- Registered Dietitian: Provides nutrition therapy to the children and their families.
- Physical Therapist: Helps a child develop gross motor skills, such as rolling over, sitting and walking.
- Speech Language Pathologist: Licensed therapist who provides language therapy, speech therapy, and oral-motor development.
- Teacher of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing: Provides language therapy, auditory training, communication instruction to the family, cognitive therapy to facilitate overall development, and information to families concerning social issues related to deafness.
- Social Worker: Helps individuals, families, and groups of people to cope with problems they're facing to improve their patients' lives.
Our clinicians contact the family within 48 hours of receiving of the authorization to provide services. Receiving authorization is a process as it often takes several days to receive paperwork from your service coordinator or school district. This paperwork outlines which services your child is approved for and includes frequency and location. If a prescription is required for your child’s services, we must receive this before services can legally begin.
For children with hearing loss, you should start therapy services as soon as your child is diagnosed with a hearing loss. Normal-hearing children begin hearing their families talk to them almost from birth. By the time they are ready to speak at ten to twelve months of age, they have had almost a year of hearing language. The hearing impaired child does not have the input of speech and language around him until he is diagnosed, fitted with a hearing aid and begins a program of communication therapy.
A hearing aid will make sounds louder, but will not necessarily make words and sounds clear. It takes time to learn to use a hearing aid; a child may not respond immediately to amplification.
Every child is different, therefore it is critical that your child have regular audiological evaluations (approximately every three months).
Your primary care physician is the best place to start. He or she may refer you to a specialist such as a geneticist, Otolaryngologist, or an Ear, Nose & Throat (ENT) specialist.
A cochlear implant is an electronic device that is surgically implanted. This electronic device is comprised of internal and external components designed to bypass damaged hair cells in the cochlea and stimulate remaining neural fibers. It does not restore normal hearing; rather it provides greater access to a damaged cochlea in order to assist and individual in learning language through hearing.