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Laws and Definitions

Department of Public Welfare (Philadelphia County Assistance Office)

Administers several programs, including

  • Cash assistance
  • Medical Assistance
  • Food Stamps
  • Employment and training programs

Applications for Public Assistance can be obtained at the local District Office-Main # 560-2547


Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is the monthly cash assistance program for poor families with children under age 18.

Subsidized Housing

Federally funded, privately owned developments; must apply to each development individually

Public Housing

Federally funded, government-run housing. Must apply at Dept. of Public Housing

Section 8

Federally funded vouchers used to subsidize rent in privately owned apartments

WRAP Around Services

Multidisciplinary behavioral and therapeutic supports for children ages 0-21 that places supports in the child’s community, school, and home.

ICM-Intensive Case Management

Intensive Case Management services provide direct services to children ages 3 through 18 years who display serious emotional disturbances. ICM works to ensure that children and their families utilize natural supports, as well as traditional and non-traditional community resources to develop appropriate relationships with family and caregivers


Therapeutic staff support services – part of WRAP around service-one-on-one support

Mobile Therapist

A person who provides psychological, behavioral, and family therapy to children in their own home


Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis, and Treatment – Works in conjunction with Medicaid to screen for conditions that interfere with normal childhood development and learning- 1-800-543-7633.


Comprehensive Student Assistance Process (CSAP)- 3 tiered process to identify students who need support in classrooms.

Child Find

Process where teachers identify children with possible special education needs for referrals to intervention programs.


Individual Family Service Plan – written plan for children 0-3 years old with developmental delays and the services they will receive- Family Focused


Individualized Education Plan – for 3-21 year olds- more Education Focused


Gifted Individualized Education Plan (GIEP). Developed for mentally gifted students (students with an I.Q. >130, or students with an I.Q. <130 that meet other educational criteria.
The Rights of Gifted Students

ITP (Individualized Transition Plan)

This written plan start when a special needs child turns 16 years old. The IEP team meets with the student to discuss and plan for future goals including: post-secondary education, vocational training, independent employment, adult services, independent living, and community participation.


Individuals with Disabilities Education Act – passed Congress in 1975 to ensure all children with disabilities in the U.S. receive free and appropriate public education (FAPE)- Birth to 3 years old is under Part C of IDEA Act. From third birthday to 1st grade is under Part B:Section 619 of IDEA.

Chapter 15 Children

These are children who may need special accommodations in school, but not formal special education. These include children with: persistent asthma; seizure disorders; diabetes; mental illnesses; or other health impairments that affects activities of daily living.

Section 504 Accommodations

Similar to Chapter 15 – is a part of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. It is not a special education program. Any student with a disability that interferes with a major life activity is qualified for educational services and accommodations. Student does not get an IEP. Conditions include: ADHD; Dyslexia: Severe Asthma; and others.


Child Protective Service- all abuse categories (physical, sexual, emotional, neglect. Protective services will respond immediately or within 24 hours.


General Protective Service- involves neglect, lack of supervision, lack of daily basic needs. Protective service will respond in one to six days.


Supplemental Security Income – A federal program that makes monthly payments to disabled children/adults who have limited income and resources. 1-800-772-1213.

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