Early Supports & Services

What are Early Supports and Services?  What role do Educators Play?  Who provides Early Supports and Services?  Is there a difference between Early Supports and Services and Early Intervention?

Click here to watch Suzanne Iverson, Director of Early Supports and Services at Community Partners, as she answers these questions and discusses the basics of Early Supports and Services for children birth to three years old and their families in several informative video interviews.

What is Early Supports & Services?

Early Supports & Services, or ‘Early Intervention’ provides developmental supports and services to eligible children birth to age three years, who have special developmental needs.  Participation in this program can help improve your child’s ability to develop and learn, and can help you and your family learn ways to support and promote your child’s development, within your family activities and community life.

In New Hampshire, the overall system of early intervention is known as Family-Centered Early Supports & Services (FCESS).  It is designed to “connect” a family with early supports and services, such as educational, occupational, social work, speech or physical therapy, to help infants and toddlers grow and develop, and to help their family in this process.  It is a voluntary program, anyone can refer a child, and there is no cost to families.

Why Early Supports & Services Works for Infants and Toddlers?

The term “early” intervention is important because research shows that the first three years are the most important time for developing and learning in a child’s life.  The goal of early supports and services in New Hampshire and at Community Partners is to “open a window of opportunity” for families to help their children with special needs develop to their full potential.  It may also prevent or decrease the need for special help during the school age years.

For a summary of the current state rules that govern Community Partners’ Early Supports & Services, please refer to this webpage: