State and federal regulations have been established to define children with exceptionalities. A child with an exceptionality means a child evaluated in accordance with the federal and/or state regulations as having:

  • Autism

  • Deaf / blind

  • Developmental delay

  • Giftedness

  • Hearing impairment including deafness

  • Intellectual disability

  • Orthopedic impairment

  • Other health impairments

  • Serious emotional disturbance

  • Specific learning disabilities

  • Speech or language impairment

  • Traumatic brain injury

  • Visual impairment including blindness

If it is determined through an appropriate evaluation that a child has one of the exceptionalities identified above, but only needs a related service and not special education, the child is not a child with a disability under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) regulations. The listing of disability terms with definitions from IDEA can be found on the Center for Parent Information and Resources website,