Special Education – Preschool

Special Education - Preschool

Jackie Turner

Jackie Turner

Marcela Hincapie

Program Support Specialists


Holli Atwater

Heather Johnson

Manar Karaja

Amanda Lefevers

Emily Merritt

Ashley Stanton


Support Staff


Karen Clayton
Preschool Transition Specialist


Parent Mentors


Parent Mentor Webpage

Toni Burton

Stacy Greene

Phone: (770)-529-0046


Georgia Early Learning and Development Standards (Birth to Age 5)


Parent Resources



Cobb County School District Special Needs Preschool program implements a literacy-based instructional model involving teaching readiness skills through exposure to repeated readings of children’s literature. Repeated readings of highly engaging children’s literature provide our preschoolers with engaging instruction across all developmental domains through real-life literacy experiences. These literacy-based units are tied to additional curricula to include: Zoo-phonics Multisensory Language Arts Program, Hands on Standards Math, Handwriting Without Tears: Get Set for School, and the Learn to Move, Move to Learn program.

Zoo-phonics Multisensory Language Arts Program is a kinesthetic, multi-modal approach to learning all aspects of language arts, including vocabulary development and articulation, based on phonics and phonemic awareness. Zoo-phonics is a method developed to enhance early reading skills through a multisensory, whole brain approach. Children learn phonics through the presentation of animals drawn in the shapes of letters for ease in memory.  Related body movements are also taught for each letter to help “cement” letter identification and related phonics concepts.

Hands on Standards Math provides math lessons that are connected to real-world problem solving and are aligned with standards. Hands on Standards Math provides a focus on preschool appropriate lessons across five math areas including Number and Operations, Geometry, Algebra, Measurement, and Data Analysis and Probability.

Handwriting Without Tears: Get Set for School provides hands on activities that address general academic readiness, alphabet knowledge, letter and number recognition and formation, counting, drawing, shapes, and colors through multisensory lessons. Lessons coordinate with literacy-based thematic units.

Learn to Move, Move to Learn is a program which assists in the integration of motor, language, cognitive, and social emotional skill development into thematically based interventions. Learn to Move, Move to Learn units provide sensory and movement based activities which link to the literacy-based thematic units and standards based instruction implemented in Cobb County School District Special Needs Preschool classrooms.

Literacy Supports

Links to Interactive Websites


Free on-line games teach 3-4 year olds, initial sounds, colors, compare and order, counting, matching and mouse skills at home, school or nursery. Use on an IWB, PC or Mac.


National Geographic Kids is an interactive website and on-line videos and games teach young children about the animals inhabiting our world.


ABCya.com, L.L.C. is a website that provides educational games and activities for school-aged children. The games on the website are organized into grade levels from pre-kindergarten to fifth grade, as well as into subject categories such as letters, numbers, and holidays.


FunBrain is a website for online educational games for kids of all ages.


PBS Kids website provides educational videos and games for children of all ages.


At Starfall, children of all ages have fun while they learn – specializing in reading, phonics & math educational games, movies, books, songs, and more for children K-3.


Storyline Online children’s literacy website streams storybook videos featuring celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations. Readers include Viola Davis, Chris Pine, Lily Tomlin, Kevin Costner, Annette Bening, James Earl Jones, Betty White and dozens more.


Frequently Asked Questions


How do I refer my preschool student for an evaluation?

  1. Babies Can’t Wait (BCW) is the state agency responsible for providing early intervention services for children birth through age three. It is the responsibility of both BCW and the school system to ensure a smooth transition from the BCW program to the school system.  School districts are required to evaluate and have an Individual Education Program (IEP) in place by the child’s third birthday.
  2. Parents may call the Special Needs Preschool office at (770) 426-3331 to refer their child for an evaluation. A referral packet will be sent to the parent to complete.  Once returned, a member of the evaluation team will call to schedule the evaluation.
  3. Private preschools, daycares, physicians, and local and state agencies may call (770) 426-3331 to refer a child for evaluation

What happens once my child is referred to the Special Needs Preschool program?

Prior to any evaluation being scheduled, online registration must be completed by parents.  

Items required for registration include:

  1. Copy of the child’s Social Security card
  2. Certificate of Immunization (Georgia form 3231) (Religious waiver—Form JLCB-2)
  3. Hearing, Dental, Vision Screening Certificate (Georgia form 3300)
  4. Proof of birth date
  5. Two documents proving residency
  6. Proof of custody, if applicable

See Student Enrollment Information on the CCSD website at  www.cobbk12.org for additional information regarding enrollment guidelines.


What does the evaluation process encompass?

Evaluations of a child’s cognitive, communication, motor, social-emotional and self-help skills are provided by a team of professionals that may include an educator, psychologist, therapists, and any other appropriate related support personnel.  A screening team reviews the referrals, gathers information and performs any necessary assessments.


What areas of disability are served within the Special Needs Preschool program?

Disability areas served include:

  • Developmental Delay
  • Other Health Impaired
  • Orthopedically Impaired
  • Hearing Impaired
  • Visually Impaired
  • Speech/Language Impaired
  • Intellectual Disability
  • Learning Disability
  • Traumatic Brain Injured
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Emotional/Behavioral Disorder

What is the cost of the evaluation and Special Education services once my child is eligible?

All services provided through the Special Education Preschool program, including the comprehensive evaluation, are offered at no charge. Funding is provided through federal, state and local sources.


How old must my child be to receive Special Education services?

Special Education services are available for all eligible three, four and five-year old children who reside within the Cobb County School District boundaries.   Services for eligible children are available on their third birthday.


What services are available to my child once he/she is found eligible?

Eligible preschoolers may be served through a home-based, community-based, or facility-based model, or unique combinations of the three models. Services are designed to meet individualized student needs. Each child receives instruction according to his/her Individualized Education Program (IEP). Speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy are available to eligible preschoolers as recommended in the IEP.


Will transportation services be offered for my child once they are found eligible for special education services?

Transportation is available for children receiving services through the facility-based model. Car seats are provided by the district at no cost.



Early Childhood Special Education Identification and Services

Cobb County School District’s Special Needs Preschool (SNP) program provides specialized instruction and related services to all children ages 3 through 5, who qualify under the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA, Part B, Section 619). The SNP program ensures the provision of a Free and Appropriate Public Education in the Least Restrictive Environment to all children who are found eligible. Services are based on an Individualized Education Program (IEP) which is developed in collaboration with SNP staff members and the parents of each child eligible for early childhood special education services. The SNP program provides a continuum of special education instructional services to eligible children. Speech-language therapy, occupational therapy and physical therapy may also be available to eligible preschoolers as recommended in the IEP.



Referral and Evaluation

The SNP program provides referred preschoolers with comprehensive evaluations in the areas of communication, cognitive, social-emotional, motor and adaptive skills. These evaluations are provided by a team of professionals which may include psychologists, educational diagnosticians and therapists. Children may be referred for an evaluation by parents, physicians and community agencies.



Early Childhood Special Education Services

Preschoolers who qualify for special education services may be served through the community based, facility-based or home-based models or unique combinations of the three models.

The community-based option provides specialized instructional activities to children in community preschool and daycare settings, dependent on the child’s specific needs, as outlined by the IEP team. Services generally consist of direct teaching from a Special Education teacher through a combination of individual and group activities, as well as consultation with community professionals. Cobb County School District (CCSD) SNP teachers collaborate with parents, caregivers, and community professionals to incorporate skill-building strategies into the child’s daily activities.

Facility-based services provide instruction in classroom settings located in many elementary schools within the CCSD. The curriculum is language rich and emphasizes skill development in the areas of communication and early literacy, social development, self-help, cognition and other skills as designated in each student’s IEP. Facility-based services are provided by a Special Education teacher with paraprofessional support. Integrated therapy services are provided.

Home-based services may be deemed appropriate when the fragility of a child’s health would prohibit the child’s participation in another service delivery option or when home-based services are the recommended service delivery for the child.





Return to the Special Education Main Page