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The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) ensures states and public agencies provide early intervention, special education, and related services to nearly 7 million eligible children and youth with disabilities across the country, including infants and toddlers. Programs for young children with disabilities play a significant role in early childhood education and development, which is particularly salient when it comes to promoting school readiness. The connections in a baby’s brain are most adaptable in the first three years of life. These connections, which are the foundation for learning, behavior, and health, become harder to change over time. Ensuring that young children have access to inclusive early interventions during this critical period of development means that children will get the appropriate services and supports they need to be equipped for success in school and avoid costly interventions later in life.



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