TEIS Extended Option

Tennessee Early Intervention System (TEIS) now serves eligible infants and toddlers with disabilities or developmental delays from birth until the start of the school year following the child’s 5th birthday. This means families of children who are eligible for IDEA Part B services will have the choice to continue with TEIS services until their child reaches school age. This extension offers families an additional option to consider as they help their children develop and prepare for school.

TEIS Extended Option One Pager

An overview of the TEIS Extended Option.

Click here to view the TEIS Extended Option One Pager.


TEIS Extended Option - What Families Need to Know

An overview of a family's options through the TEIS Extended Option.

TEIS Extended Option - What Families Need to Know - in Arabic, in Spanish


TEIS Pathway

Understand the pathway from making a TEIS referral to transition.

Click here to view the TEIS Pathway.

The TEIS Extended Option Policy Statement can be found on our Policies & Guidance webpage under policies and procedures.



TEIS Extended Option for Families

The presentation linked below is tailored specifically for families to learn about the TEIS Extended Option. The presentation reviews a family's choices, eligibility, and transition support.

Click here to watch the recorded presentation.

Click here to view the presentation slides.


TEIS Extended Option for Providers

The presentation linked below is tailored specifically for early intervention service providers to learn about the TEIS Extended Option. 

Click here to watch the recorded presentation.

Click here to view the presentation slides.

Prior to implementation, a child received services from TEIS until they turn 3. Then, if eligible, the child may receive services in the school system from age 3 until age 22. 

The extension of TEIS services up to the start of school following the 5th birthday provides eligible families with the choice to either continue services through TEIS or transition to the school system any time after the child turns 3. 

TEIS Service Coordinators work with the family and local school district to make sure the family has a smooth transition to services provided by the school system.   


To be eligible for the TEIS Extended Option, a child must meet the following criteria: 

  • Enrolled in TEIS prior to the age of 3 
  • Eligible for special education services in the local school district 
  • Turn 3 on or after October 15, 2022 

Once a child transitions to special education services in the school, they cannot return to TEIS services.

If a child is referred to TEIS after his or her 3rd birthday, the child will not be eligible to begin TEIS services.  The family would work with their local school district to receive services.   

If a family chooses to leave TEIS services after the child turns 3, that child cannot return to TEIS services.  


*What is an IEP?

An IEP is an Individualized Education Plan that is developed for a child with a disability to ensure they receive the supports and services they need to thrive in school.

The Arc of TN and TNStep have developed resources to support families through the decision-making process after age 3.

the arc

Family Engagement in Special Education is a collaborative project of The Arc Tennessee and the Tennessee Department of Education.

They help to empower parents and caregivers and increase family engagement in Special Education. This group consists of a team of individuals with background experiences as educators, mental health professionals, parents, caregivers of individuals with disabilities, and disability-related fields. The family engagement team members can provide knowledge and support from an educator and parent perspective. You can think of them as the bridge that connects your family to your school in a variety of ways.

Find success in your Special Education experience. Visit www.FamilyEngagementTN.com.


TNSTEP is a statewide organization that supports families of children and youth with disabilities from ages 3 to 26 by providing parent training, the latest and most relevant information and resources, and other supports to those navigating special education in Tennessee. TNSTEP believes that parents and caregivers are their children’s best advocates, that youth with disabilities should be self-advocates, and that no family should have to walk the path alone. More information can be found at www.tnstep.org