This article examines how the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) has influenced state and local practices in providing services to infants, toddlers and young children with disabilities and their families. The authors discuss how the IDEA has promoted the development of a system of services and supports for young children with disabilities over the past 25 years, as well as some of the barriers to its effective implementation nationwide. Specifically, the following four implementation issues are addressed: access to services, quality of services, costs and funding, and outcomes. The article concludes with a brief discussion about the current trend toward building unified early childhood systems within states and how this trend might impact IDEA early childhood programs.
Hebbeler, K., Spiker, D., & Kahn, L. (2012). Individuals with Disabilities Education Act's early childhood programs: Powerful vision and pesky details. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education, 31(4), 199-207.