Aging Out Of The Early Intervention Program

My son is now 3 years old.
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It’s an age where you now have to pay $40+ to enter Disneyland to ride the same rides that they can at 2. Restaurants generally begin to charge for 3 year olds, but not 2. Other attractions are now more costly. And now we can’t have therapy because he is now too old according to the state. Old? 3 is old?

The Early Intervention Program that is run through the State of Arizona only lasts until a child’s 3rd birthday. In my son’s case, he will be starting pre-school in 3 weeks in a special class where he will receive therapy. He will attend for 2 years instead of the customary 1 year. However, we are also applying for long term care through the state so he can get the additional therapies that he needs.

3 seems to be a magical age in which he can now do things before that he couldn’t at 2. For him, he’s already behind in a lot of things so turning 3 isn’t as mystical as we are lead to believe it is. He has made so many strides as a 2 year old and we know that once he starts school, he will just blossom even more.

Long term care applications are complicated and can be confusing. The initial call to receive the application is relatively painless but the short time period you have to complete and return the form is frustrating. We received ours on a Monday and it was due the following Monday. Um, not happening. Thankfully they were able to extend it so it could arrive at least during the week it was originally due.

Saying goodbye to our son’s therapists was so sad because we had finally found people who were dependable and worked well with him. He didn’t fully understand what was happening, but I know he is going to miss them. He needs that interaction and now we have to wait until school starts and hopefully long term care!

I firmly believe that if the state cuts anymore services to our children that are at-risk or in serious need, our future is going to be severely crippled as a nation. Our children need us to stand up and fight for them. They need all of the help and advantages we can give them in life so they can be a participant in society. The Early Intervention Program provides that for our children. I am grateful to have had this program for my son.

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