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(12.4) My infant or toddler may be eligible for both school district and regional center services. Which agency is responsible for ensuring that early intervention services are provided?

(12.4) My infant or toddler may be eligible for both school district and regional center services. Which agency is responsible for ensuring that early intervention services are provided?

For infants and toddlers who are eligible to receive services from both a regional center and a local school district, the regional center is responsible for providing or purchasing appropriate services that are beyond the responsibilities of the district—but only to the extent these services are required by the federal early intervention law. The regional center is the “payer of last resort” and, therefore, ultimately responsible for providing and/or paying for services to infants and toddlers who may be eligible for services from both the regional center and school district. [Cal. Gov. Code Sec. 95014(c).]

School districts are obligated to serve only children with low incidence disabilities. Districts are required to operate their programs for infants and toddlers at the same level they did during the 1980 – 81 fiscal year. [Cal. Ed. Code Sec. 56425; Cal. Gov. Code Sec. 95014(c).] This requirement is sometimes referred to as the district’s “maintenance of effort.”

Regardless of which agencies are responsible for providing services, families should have services and agency service responsibilities clearly written into their child’s service plan.  See Questions 12.10, 12.11, 12.12.