Skip to main content
OCALI's office is closed to the public but the team is still hard at work! Contact us with any questions. We are #HereToHelp.

MedEd Connections Resource Guide: Deaf and Hard of Hearing (D/HH)

Steps from Screening to Service


Deaf/Hard of Hearing Birth to Age Three

Steps

Who What State Agency Parts of the State Agency/System
Step 1: Newborn Hearing Screening Audiologist, hospital nurse, speech language pathologist (SLP), any trained allied medical professional Infant Hearing Program: Performs required hearing screening for newborns before discharge. A second screening is performed prior to referring for audiological evaluation. Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Hospital
Step 2: Follow Up Audiological Evaluation Audiologist For newborns who did not pass the second screening, an audiologist performs diagnostic audiological evaluation, to identify whether a hearing loss or deafness is present. Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Hospital, clinic, children’s hospital, or audiology diagnostic site
Step 3: After Identification Audiologist, physician, family, or early intervention provider Early intervention (EI) receives referral, the Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) team determines eligibility and assesses the need for EI services to support functional outcomes based on the family’s priorities. Evaluates and plans any needed supports/services for child’s physical, cognitive, social and emotional development. Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) Early Intervention service providers
Step 4: After Early Intervention Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) team, and school personnel Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) team supports child’s transition into school. Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) and Ohio Department of Education (ODE) Early Intervention service providers, and local school district

Deaf/Hard of Hearing School Age (3-21)

Steps Who What State Agency Parts of the State Agency/System
Step 1: Screening Audiologist, school nurse, hospital nurse, or speech language pathologist (SLP) Performs required school age screening, as mandated by Ohio state law Ohio Department of Health (ODH) and Ohio Department of Education (ODE) Local school district, hospital, clinic, or doctor’s office

Step 2: After Screening, If Did Not Pass

Audiologist, school nurse, hospital nurse, or speech language pathologist (SLP) For children who did not pass the school age screening, the performer of the screening sends a referral to the family, requesting further testing to be done by an audiologist. Ohio Department of Health (ODH) and Ohio Department of Education (ODE) Local school district, hospital, clinic, or doctor’s office
Step 3: Follow Up Audiological Evaluation Audiologist An audiologist performs a diagnostic audiological evaluation to identify whether deafness or hearing loss is present. Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Hospital, doctor’s office, or audiology diagnostic site
Step 4: Determining Eligibility and Services School team Once a request for an evaluation from a family member or school personnel is received, the school team conducts a comprehensive evaluation to determine the strengths and needs of the child. The team creates an Evaluation Team Report (ETR) and determines if specially designed instruction is needed. The ETR is reviewed at least one time every three years for children who are eligible for special education services. Ohio Department of Education (ODE) Local school district
Step 5: IEP Development Individualized Education Program (IEP) team If the ETR team (see above) determined that the child needs specially designed instruction, the IEP team will create an Individualized Education Program. The IEP includes any necessary services, accommodations, modifications, and supports needed to access the curriculum. At age 14, as transition planning begins, students can be referred to OOD for services and those services incorporated into the IEP. The IEP is reviewed and revised at annually. Ohio Department of Education (ODE) and Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD) Local school district services and those services incorporated into the IEP. The IEP is reviewed and revised at annually.
Step 6: Transition into Adulthood Individualized Education Program (IEP) team (including the student), community service providers, state and community agencies Create student centered plan for transition into adulthood including employment, further education (such as college, or trade school), and independent living skills. At age 14, as transition planning begins, students can be referred to OOD for services and those services incorporated into the IEP. Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD), Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD), and Ohio Department of Education (ODE) Local school district with support from Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), and Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD)

Terms and Definitions

Audiologist: A licensed health care professional who identifies and treats auditory (hearing) and balance conditions. They are trained to maintain and fit hearing assistive technology (HAT). They may also conduct listening rehabilitation therapy.

Early Intervention (EI): Early Intervention known as EI, is a statewide system that provides coordinated services to eligible children below the age three with developmental delays or disabilities and their families. The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) establishes EI programs in all 50 states. In Ohio, the Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) serves as the lead agency for the EI program. EI services are typically provided in the child’s home or other community settings.

Evaluation Team Report (ETR): The report created after a comprehensive evaluation has been completed by school personnel. It documents the current performance of the student, as well as strengths and needs of the student. The results in this document are used for special education eligibility determination and help to plan an Individualized Education Program (IEP), if necessary.

Hearing Screening: A quick hearing test designed to identify whether a person is at risk for hearing loss and needs a further, more in-depth examination by an audiologist. State law requires that children at certain grade levels are screened.

Individualized Education Program (IEP): A team-developed written program that identifies therapeutic and educational goals and objectives needed to appropriately address the educational needs of a student with a disability, qualifying for special education services, ages 3 through 21 years.

Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA): A federal law that details the educational rights and requirements applicable to students with disabilities.

Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP): The IFSP is a written plan for providing Early Intervention (EI) services to an infant or toddler with a disability and to the child’s family in EI.

Newborn Hearing Screening: An automatic hearing screening performed at the hospital after the baby’s birth. The hearing screening shows risk for hearing loss or deafness. The baby may have one or two hearing screenings. If the baby does not pass the second hearing screening, a referral is made for a more detailed test with an audiologist.

Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD): A state agency that offers support across the lifespan to people with developmental disabilities and oversees a statewide system of supportive services that focus on ensuring health and safety, supporting access to community participation, and increasing opportunities for meaningful employment. In Ohio, DODD serves as the lead agency under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) for the state’s Early Intervention Program.

Ohio Department of Education (ODE): A state agency that is responsible for the education of students in Ohio.

Ohio Department of Health (ODH): A state agency that oversees the Infant Hearing Program and the School Age Hearing Program. This program includes newborn hearing screening and diagnostic audiology follow up for babies and children birth to three.

Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities (OOD): A state agency that partners with Ohioans with disabilities to achieve quality employment and independence.

Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP): A professional who works to prevent, assess, diagnose, and treat speech, language, social communication, cognitive-communication, and swallowing disorders in children and adults.

Transition: The time between two phases. This term is used in various situations. Early transition refers to the time when students are moving from home or early intervention services into the school system at age three for early childhood services. The secondary transition is the time when a school age student moves from school to post school activities. The secondary transition consists of a coordinated set of activities that may address, among others, the assessment, planning process, educational, and community experiences for youth with disabilities as they turn age 14. It is also, the period of time when a student exits the K-12 education system and is no longer eligible for school-based services. The student enters the “real world” where he may qualify for adult services.