Important Terms

Early Intervention
is a program by New York State and New York City Department of Health. This is an interagency program for the age 0-to-3 years population with developmental delays in their efforts to realize their full potential. Visits are approved under the IFSP – Individualized Family Service Plan guidelines.  The child exits the program at age 3 in either January or August, based on their date-of-birth. The genesis of the program dates to the passage of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act by Congress in 1986 (Public Law 99-457).

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is lead NYC agency; the NYS Department of Health coordinates the statewide network of services.


EI – City of New York Information at:

For the Department of Education, speech and language services are considered a Related Service.  Heather Boerner maintains an RSA-Related Service Agreement with the Department.  Services provided are mandated through an IEP- Individualized Education Plan.   Related services are defined as developmental and corrective support services, which are required to assist a student with a disability to benefit more fully from their school based education.  Based on a student’s Individualized Educational Program (IEP), related support services can be provided.  This includes Speech/Language Therapy.

NYC information at:

The Committee on Preschool Special Education is for children ages 3-to-5 years, and requires a referral from parents. Evaluations are conducted by the Department of Education and services are delivered and provided by approved providers (Heather Boerner is an approved provider). The program can begin once the child is three (3) year old and terminates at the initiation of kindergarten.  Many school districts are sources of more information and each district is assigned a service coordinator to assign service mandates (frequency and duration of services provided each week.)

More information here (sample): 

The Committee on School-Age Special Education.  This program begins when the child enters into kindergarten and related services can be provided under this system until the child is 18 years of age.  Again, department of education evaluators determine if the services are warranted based on the child’s degree of disability in the area of speech and language development. 

Sensory Integration
The neurological process that organizes sensation from one’s own body and the environment, thus making it possible to use the body effectively within the environment. Specifically, it deals with how the brain processes multiple sensory modality inputs into usable functional outputs. It has been believed for some time that inputs from different sensory organs are processed in different areas in the brain. The communication within and among these specialized areas of the brain is known as functional integration.  Newer research has shown that these different regions of the brain may not be solely responsible for only one sensory modality, but could use multiple inputs to perceive what the body senses about its environment. Sensory integration is necessary for almost every activity that we perform because the combination of multiple sensory inputs is essential for us to comprehend our surroundings. (Source:

Sensory Processing Disorder Website:

Handwriting Without Tears
A Handwriting curriculum designed to implement developmentally appropriate, multi-sensorial approach to teaching the art of written communication beginning at the pre-school level through cursive essay writing. (

Neuro-Developmental Treatment
The NDT Approach is used for management and treatment of individuals with central nervous system (CNS) pathophysiology. The individual's strengths and impairments are identified and addressed in relation to functional abilities and limitations. The NDT Approach continues to evolve with the emergence of new theories, models, research, and information in the movement sciences.  NDT is a hands-on, problem solving approach. Intervention involves direct handling and guidance to optimize function. The approach is guided by the client's reactions throughout every treatment session. (Source:

*Note: Occupational Therapist, Sonya Kashlan of Connected Kids has been trained in NDT.