Alert: Beginning July 1, 2018, the Department of Early Learning will become the Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF). After June 30, 2018, this website will no longer be updated. For the latest information on early learning, visit the DCYF website at

Early Intervention Information for Community Members


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Brain research shows that learning begins at birth. The clear link between early brain activity and brain development provides the building blocks for lifelong learning and function. When there is a diagnosis of a disability or developmental concern at birth, or soon thereafter, early intervention results in greater developmental gains for a child. Brain research shows that about 85 percent of brain growth happens in the first three years of life.

Early intervention enhances a child's growth and development. After nearly 50 years of research, early intervention has demonstrated results in children needing fewer special education and other services later in life, and, in some cases, being indistinguishable from classmates without disabilities. Research shows that every dollar invested in early childhood programs results in $4 to $9 in reduced future costs for special education, welfare, crime costs and increased tax revenues.

Community partners are a vital component of Washington's early intervention system. The Department of Early Learning (DEL) values public interest, knowledge and participation in early intevention.

Resources for community members