The information presented below is a brief overview of this state's early intervention service system. Please contact the lead state agency or follow the various links for more detailed information.

Lead agency for early intervention services

Arkansas' First Connections program is part of the Arkansas Department of Human Services.

Eligibility criteria for early intervention services

Children under the age of 3 may be eligible if they have :

  • Developmental delay of 25 percent or more of their chronological age in one or more developmental areas
  • Medical diagnosis that has a high probability of resulting in a developmental delay

See policies and procedures (page 18) for more information.

Number of children served

Arkansas reported 3,130 infants and toddlers for the 2012 child count.

Support service structure

The First Connections state staff monitors and supports the services provided by a network of local service providers.

Initial family contact

Families may call First Connections at 800-643-8258.

Services for at-risk children

Local service teams will provide information on available resources to families with children who are not eligible for early intervention services. Families may also contact the parent training and information center below or the help and information line at 800-643-8258.

Family cost participation

Families are not required to pay for services. Public or private insurance may be accessed under certain conditions.

Insurance coverage for autism spectrum disorder services

Arkansas enacted legislation related to insurance coverage specifically for autism spectrum disorder-related services. See Arkansas insurance for more details.

Parent training and information center

The Arkansas Disability Coalition is Arkansas' parent training and information center. Additional support for families in Benton, Carroll, Madison and Washington counties is provided by the Northwest Arkansas Community Parent Center.

Early childhood school services information

Information regarding school services for children ages 3 through 5 is available from the local school district and the parent training and information centers listed above. Additional information is available at early childhood education or:

Arkansas State Department of Education
Phone: 501-682-4225

State early intervention resources

Families may call the family help and information line at 800-643-8258 to obtain more information regarding early intervention resources.