National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHCY, an acronym derived from its original name, National Information Center for Handicapped Children and Youth) operated as a national centralized information resource on disabilities and special education for children and youth ages birth through 21 years, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education. It did so by collecting, organizing and disseminating current, accurate, research-based information about childhood disability and special education. The Center also disseminated information about the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), the nation's special education law and the No Child Left Behind Act, the nation's general education law. NICHCY focused on research, information dissemination, and providing quality information on teaching and learning.
NICHCY was de-funded by the U.S. Department of Education in 2013. Its website will continue to be available until September 2014, and its resources have been moved to Center for Parent Information and Resources. The original NICHCY website carries a short message about the decommissioning of the site following the de-funding of the organization. Here is the text of that notice:
Regrettably, on September 30, 2013, our funding from the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) at the U.S. Department of Education ended. Our website will remain available until September 2014. Note that the new Center for Parent Information and Resources will be the new home of NICHCY resources. Visit their Resource Library at http://www.parentcenterhub.org/resources/
NICHCY responded to over 2,500 requests for information each year from families, professionals, advocates, government agencies, journalists, and others concerned with issues affecting children and youth with disabilities.
NICHCY’S Research Center connected stakeholders to the knowledge base the field of special education has accumulated over years of investigation and practice. Approximately 5,000 unique users visited the Research Center’s web site each week to find the latest research news, briefs, and analysis on effective educational practices for children with disabilities.
NICHCY's services, publications, and Web site were available in both English and Spanish. On the Center for Parent Information and Resources web site, information is available on:
- Services for infants and toddlers with disabilities (Early intervention)
- The special education process and IEPs (individualized education programs)
- Fact sheets on disabilities (Attention Deficit Disorder, Autism/PDD, Cerebral Palsy, Deafness/Hearing Loss, Down Syndrome, Emotional Disturbance, Epilepsy, Learning Disabilities, Mental Retardation, Severe and/or Multiple Disabilities, Speech-Language Impairments, Spina Bifida, Traumatic Brain Injury, and Visual Impairments)
- Research on effective interventions for students with disabilities
- Education rights of students in special education and what the law requires
- Transition from school to adult life NICHCY, About the National Dissemination Center, retrieved 2007-09-10
NICHCY's site also provided many resources, including:
- Materials for parents of children with disabilities;
- State resources for every state and U.S. territory;
- Databases of national organizations and conferences focused on disabilities or education;
NICHCY was funded by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), United States Department of Education. All of NICHCY's publications are copyright free. NICHCY was operated by FHI360.NICHCY, About NICHCY: Who Funds Us?, retrieved 2007-09-10
- "About the National Dissemination Center". http://nichcy.org/. The National Dissemination Center. Retrieved 9 July 2014.