(1) The department shall maintain regional diagnostic and learning resource centers for exceptional students, to assist in the provision of medical, physiological, psychological, and educational testing and other services designed to evaluate and diagnose exceptionalities, to make referrals for necessary instruction and services, and to facilitate the provision of instruction and services to exceptional students. The department shall cooperate with the Department of Children and Family Services in identifying service needs and areas.
(2) Within its identified service area, each regional center shall:
(a) Provide assistance to parents, teachers, and other school personnel and community organizations in locating and identifying exceptional children and planning educational programs for them.
(b) Assist in the provision of services for exceptional children, using to the maximum, but not supplanting, the existing facilities and services of each district.
(c) Provide orientation meetings at least annually for teachers, principals, supervisors, and community agencies to familiarize them with center facilities and services for exceptional children.
(d) Plan, coordinate, and assist in the implementation of inservice training programs, consistent with each district’s program of staff development, for the development and updating of attitudes, skills, and instructional practices and procedures necessary to the education of exceptional children.
(e) Assist districts in the identification, selection, acquisition, use, and evaluation of media and materials appropriate to the implementation of instructional programs based on individual educational plans for exceptional children.
(f) Provide for the dissemination and diffusion of significant information and promising practices derived from educational research, demonstration, and other projects.
(g) Assist in the delivery, modification, and integration of instructional technology, including microcomputer applications and adaptive and assistive devices, appropriate to the unique needs of exceptional students.
(3) Diagnostic and resource centers may provide testing and evaluation services to private school students and other children who are not enrolled in public schools.
(4) Diagnostic and learning resource centers may assist districts in providing testing and evaluation services for infants and preschool children with or at risk of developing disabilities, and may assist districts in providing interdisciplinary training and resources to parents of infants and preschool children with or at risk of developing disabilities and to school readiness programs.