The child care & early education glossary defines terms used to describe aspects of child care and early education practice and policy; the research glossary defines terms used in conducting social science and policy research, for example those describing methods, measurements, statistical procedures, and other aspects of research.
Refers to Professional Development that occurs outside of a credentialing program that early childhood Providers take to enhance their skills and remain current regarding knowledge and practices in the field. A certain number of in-service training hours are typically required for early childhood professionals to maintain early childhood-related Certifications.
The principle of enabling all children, regardless of their diverse backgrounds or abilities, to participate actively in natural settings within their learning environments and larger communities.
Refers to one's ability to qualify for a program or service based on household income and related criteria, like family size.
Individualized Education Plan (IEP)
Outlines the special education and related services that a child between the ages of 3 and 21 years must receive if they have been identified as having a disability. The IEP represents an agreement between the school or child care provider and the parent/family and is required based on the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Part B. A child has to be reevaluated every three years to maintain eligibility and continue to receive support services.
Individualized Family Services Plan (IFSP)
A written plan that outlines the special services children ages birth through two years and their families will receive if found eligible for early intervention services. The plan is mandated by the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Part C. See related: Early Intervention.
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
A federal law enacted in 1990 that makes free appropriate public education (FAPE) available to eligible children with disabilities. The IDEA, previously known as the Education for All Handicapped Children Act (EHA), governs how states and public agencies provide Special Education, Early Intervention, and related services to eligible infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities. See related:Part B of the IDEA;Part C of the IDEA.
Informal Child Care
A term used to describe child care provided by relatives, friends, and neighbors in the child's own home or in another home, often in unregulated settings. See related: Informal Child Care; Kith and Kin Child Care; Family, Friend and Neighbor (FFN) Care.