California’s Early Identification and Intervention System and the Role of Help Me Grow

Brief  •  May 6, 2020

Summary

California has some of the lowest developmental screening and early intervention rates in the country, and the COVID-19 crisis has both exposed and exacerbated these deep inequities. This First 5 Center for Children’s Policy paper asserts that now is a critical time to evaluate and improve California’s early identification and intervention (EII) system by leveraging the state’s existing county Help Me Grow (HMG) systems.

“Connecting a child to critical services can dramatically change the trajectory of his or her life, but families continue to face barriers to accessing these services,” said Sarah Crow, managing director of the First 5 Center for Children’s Policy. “By leveraging Help Me Grow, California can create a more equitable EII system and put our youngest children on the path to success.”