Suspected Developmental Delay
Procedures to follow when a teacher suspects developmental delay in a child:
- Periodically, anecdotal observations made by teachers of children reveal possible developmental issues.
- In such an occurrence, teachers will use a screening tool to inform their observations. Infant and toddler teachers will use the Denver Developmental Screening Test, and the preschool teacher will use the MPSI, and Ages and Stages.
- Teachers will invite parents to visit with them about the suspicions and the screening results.
- No delay signaled by screening tool: teacher should have conversation with parents to discuss what parents see at home in their child’s behavior relative to the concerns of the teacher. Perhaps it is important to share developmental milestone fliers with parents at this time. Revisit the issue with the parents at the next conference.
- Concern is signaled by screening tool: teacher should schedule a visit with the parents to discuss the screen.
- Both parties observe and work on skills. Set 2-3 goals; set timelines; meet again to discuss goal achievement and next steps.
- Letter sent directly to physician or school district for formal evaluation.
- After professional evaluation, the parents, professional staff, teaching staff and any other interested/appropriate party should create an individualized program plan for the child. All staff as appropriate shall implement the plan.
- Continued conversation between teacher and parents and other professional staff is essential, and should be initiated by the classroom teacher.
(See Child Care for Children with Special Needs, Appendix III-P)