Parents who have children with special needs will find a wealth of resources in Austin to ensure that kids get the care they need to thrive and succeed.

Not only does each and every Austin area school district have special education resources within the school system there are also specialized schools and centers across the city for those with learning disabilities visual speech or hearing impairments autism mental retardation orthopedic impairments traumatic brain injuries or other special needs. The following is a list of schools and resources for Austin parents.

Higher Education for Students with Disabilities

Community for Accredited Schools Guide

This guide helps students with disabilities and their parents better understand their rights when it comes to post-secondary education. In addition to outlining laws and regulations that apply specifically to students with disabilities our guide offers tips and information about finding a college or university that best suits a student’s needs.





Both these services provide funding for therapies assisted/supported living home modifications nursing and more.  Waiting lists are years long so parents should sign up as soon as possible.

Austin Travis County Mental Health Mental Retardation


Links families to other support services and wait lists respite in-home and family support and case-management.

Children with Special Healthcare Needs


Department of Health – provides case management and supports family-centered community based strategies for improving quality of life for children with special health care needs.

Medically Dependent Children’s Program (MDCP)

877-438-5658 (waiting list)

Department of Human Services – provides a variety of services.

SSI (Supplemental Security Income)

512-916-5404 – Austin/Travis County

Monthly payment and/or Medicaid; dependent on income and disability.

Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services

DARS Inquiries line: (800) 628-5115

Advocacy for Texans of all ages who are deaf or hard of hearing. Also provides services and programs for Texans of all ages who are blind or visually impaired including transition services for those aged 13-22 as well as assistance in vocational rehabilitation and job counseling for Texans with disabilities (all ages).

Family Support Cooperative


Support and informational meetings every Tuesday night during the AISD school semester at Rosedale School that includes free pizza free childcare and sibling activities.

Parent & School Support Team – AISD


Referral information problem-solving between schools and families help with transitions.

ARC of the Capital Area


Respite parent-to-parent matches food and clothing pantry case-management.

ARCIL Inc.  (Austin Resource Center for Independent Living)


Advocacy and referrals for all ages independent living skills and transition assistance for teens (14 and up).

Behavior Frontiers


Behavior Frontiers offers exceptional behavior intervention services to Austin and surrounding areas in Texas. They are NOW ACCEPTING new clients with autism or other special needs into their applied behavior analysis (ABA) treatment programs.  Their comprehensive treatment program is conducted in the child’s natural setting such as his/her home school or community. Our highly-trained team of behavior supervisors and instructors work together with family members and other professionals to target the reduction of problem behaviors and the improvement of a variety of age-appropriate skills such as socialization and communication.

ECI (Early Childhood Intervention)

DARS Inquiries line: (800) 628-5115

A division of the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services ECI is a statewide program for families with children birth to three with disabilities and developmental delays. ECI supports families to help their children reach their potential through developmental services. Services are provided by a variety of local agencies and organizations across Texas.

First Call for Help


Comprehensive confidential information and referral program with a computerized database of services for Travis County residents.

GAFE (Grupo De Apoyo Para Familias Especiales)


Advocacy and support services to Spanish-speaking families.

McBeth Recreation Center


Provides programs and recreation participation opportunities for children teens and adults who have developmental and/or physical challenges.

Path Project


Assists with special education laws regulations and ARDs.

Disability Services ASAP (A Safety Awareness Program) at SafePlace


Abuse prevention and education for teachers parents and students with disabilities.

Independent Steps


Independent Steps provides rehabilitation services in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for children and adults with cerebral palsy multiple sclerosis Parkinson’s disease brain injury or post-stroke conditions. We specialize in the Conductive Education methodology which is aimed at rebuilding the mental processes and cognitive skills needed to overcome basic challenges such as learning to roll crawl sit stand walk eat write and become potty trained.

Texas Parent to Parent

512-458-8600 or  (866) 896-6001

A statewide non-profit developed for parents by parents: provides parent to parent matches support information website resources newsletter training.

WorkSource – Child Care Solutions


Assists with childcare funding for families who are financially eligible and are working in school or in training.


SSI (Supplemental Security Income)

Monthly payment and Medicaid; based on family income and resources if child is under age 18; based on individual if over 18.

NICHY (National Information Center for Children and Youth w/ Disabilities)


Disability library and information on related services; produces state resource sheet.

Autism Parent Magazine

Up-to-date news and professional guidance for parents and children on the subject of autism. Visit their site for a free issue of the magazine.

Exceptional Parent Magazine


Monthly magazine for parents and professional; National website includes resources for parent to parent programs; information and referral centers disability library services products and much more.

Family Village

A global community that integrates information resources disabilities library and communication opportunities on the Internet.

NORD (National Organization for Rare Disorders)


Information and referrals on rare disorders.

MUMS (Mothers United for Moral Support)


National parent-to-parent network; provides information and emotional support to parents whose child has a rare disorder.

NIH (National Institute of Health)


Stephen Groft at the office of rare diseases provides information on which hospitals and physicians are doing research or clinical trails on any disease.

NAMI (National Association for Mental Illness)


Provides information and training programs for caregivers of individuals with mental health issues or brain disorders.


The ARC of Texas

IDEA 2004

NICHCY (National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities)

TEA (Texas Education Agency) – Special Education
(See Educational Programs then Special Programs.)

Action Behavior
Offers therapy programs for children with Autism.

Autism Parent Resources

Autism Resources for Families

Sesame Street Autism Resources for Parents

Reduce the Noise: Help Loved Ones with Sensory Overload Enjoy Shopping

CDC Autism Links and Resources

Operation Autism for Military Families

Academic Accommodation Resources

Temple Grandin’s Teaching Tips

Taking your Child with Autism to the Orthodontist

Estate Planning for Parents of Kids with Autism