ECSE - What We're About

The Osakis Public School has an Early Childhood Special Education program available to children with special needs, ages of birth to seven. These services are provided to qualifying children at no cost to the family. ECSE believes that each child is unique and special, and by providing early home intervention visits, we are better able to integrate children into regular education classroom settings. Children learn best through play, so each home visit includes developmentally- appropriate toys and activities.


An infant or toddler in the Osakis school district is eligible for educational services in the home or daycare setting if the child is identified through specialized testing and assessment as having a need. Identified infants and toddlers must meet Minnesota State criteria for Early Childhood Special Education services.

At age three, the child with special needs typically transitions to a center-based program. There, the child can socialize and play with peers and enjoy fun, developmentally-appropriate learning activities that facilitate the development of gross motor, fine motor, cognitive, and social skills (based on the individual needs of the child). Students with special needs are integrated with students in regular education.

When necessary, ECSE services are provided until the child’s seventh birthday. At that time, services are either discontinued because the child’s needs have been met, or it is determined that the student continues to qualify for special education services.

Referrals are received from a variety of sources including parents, doctors, preschool teachers, childcare providers, and other professionals. Referrals may be due to speech/language, motor, behavioral, vision, hearing, social/emotional, or cognitive issues.

Kristen Will is the district’s Early Childhood Special Education Coordinator. She works with families and other professionals to help children with special needs reach their fullest potential. Please contact Kristen at the Osakis Public School (320-859-2191 Ext. 1172) if you have questions or concerns about your child’s development.