Early Support for Infants & Toddlers

Early intervention services are designed to enable children birth to 3 with developmental delays or disabilities to be active and successful during the early childhood years and in the future in a variety of settings—in their homes, in child care, in preschool or school programs, and in their communities.

Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act is a federal grant program that assists states in operating a comprehensive statewide program of early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities, ages birth through age 2 years, and their families.

Congress established this program in 1986 in recognition of "an urgent and substantial need" to:

  • enhance the development of infants and toddlers with disabilities
  • reduce educational costs by minimizing the need for special education through early intervention
  • minimize the likelihood of institutionalization, and maximize independent living
  • enhance the capacity of families to meet their child's needs

The Early Support for Infants and Toddlers (ESIT) program supports families with information and skills to ensure they are supported as the most critical influence on their child’s early learning and development.

ESIT Guiding Concepts

Watch this three-minute video for a summary of the foundational principals of early intervention

I am concerned about my child's development. Who do I contact for help?

  • Watch Please Ask, a three-minute video that shows the importance of referring infants and toddlers to early intervention.
  • To learn about typical development, read the birth-to-6 pre-screening chart.
  • Call the Help Me Grow Washington Hotline at 1-800-322-2588. This statewide, toll-free number offers help in English, Spanish and other languages.