The children impacted by the Flint water crisis have a safe place to turn for a free neurodevelopmental evaluation to understand the impact of the water crisis upon them. Lead can only be detected through a blood test in the first 20 to 30 days of exposure. This means a neurodevelopmental evaluation is necessary to determine where a child may be struggling, as well as to determine their strengths.
The attorneys for the schoolchildren of Flint, including the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Michigan, the Education Law Center, and the International Law Firm White and Case created a valuable evaluation resource and established the Neurodevelopmental Center of Excellence (NCE) for the families of Flint, by working together with the Flint Community Schools, the Genesee Intermediate School District, and the Michigan Department of Education. Neurodevelopmental evaluations often cost more than $3,000; however, our legal settlement with the state secured $4 million in funding from the state to cover the upstart cost, making these NCE evaluations free to the community, as it is sustained through Medicaid funding.
The NCE will also have Navigators to assist families in their journey through obtaining an NCE evaluation and having the results shared with their school to determine if educational and behavioral support is needed at school. The remainder of the case continues to ensure that once a child’s needs are identified, the District with the support of the GISD and MDE responds to those needs by providing each child with an education that enables the child to one day live independently, seek further education, and get a job. This is the intent of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act under which the Plaintiffs have sought relief, and will continue to pursue until the families in Flint have within the Flint Community Schools a quality education that is accessible to all. All children can learn.
The ACLU of Michigan continues to fight for the schoolchildren of Flint in court. Right now, there are resources available now for children impacted by lead poisoning.
If your child, or a child you know, is affected by the lead poisoning in Flint, please consider using these resources:
- This is a registry of people in Flint exposed to lead poisoned water. Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha is leading the Flint Registry with coalition partners to connect impacted people and families with health, educational and other resources.
- This testing is part of the settlement the ACLU reached with the state to secure funding for in-depth health screening for children exposed to lead poisoning. This assessment will help determine the impact of lead on a child's learning abilities and health.
- Register a child for an assessment with the NCE by filling out and sending in this referral form.
- Read more background information on the referral process and NCE here.
Read about our ongoing lawsuit, advocating for Flint schoolchildren.