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Fall 2017 Early Intervention Training Program Newsletter
News and Updates
 Join our Facebook page
 Join our Facebook page
Please join our new Facebook page!

EITP now has an official Facebook page in addition to our Facebook group! The new page is where we will share information regarding upcoming training events and other important announcements and resources from EITP and DHS. 

Please be sure to like and follow our new page at!

Even if you joined our Facebook Group in the past, we encourage you to follow our new page as our primary resource for sharing updates and posts.

Please share this with your colleagues to help them stay informed!

 ECTA Webinar Series
 ECTA Webinar Series

EITP is proud to announce that the 4-part, recorded webinar series, Engaging Families and Creating Trusting Partnerships to Improve Child and Family Outcomes, is available for EI credit!  There is no charge for these webinars!

The ECTA Center partnered with the DaSy Center, Ann and Rud Turnbull, and invited guests to facilitate this series aimed at supporting early intervention (EI) and early childhood special education (ECSE) systems leaders with building capacity in personnel and families to develop trusting partnerships.  The series discusses the role of data in strengthening family-professional partnerships, as well providing suggestions and resources for supporting partnerships between personnel and families.

To register for the webinars or learn more, please visit the ECTA Webinars section of our EITP online calendar at

IATP Statewide disAbility Expo 2017 is on Oct. 23 & 24 in Springfield
 Event Flyer (PDF)
 Event Flyer (PDF)

The Illinois Assistive Technology Program (IATP) Statewide disAbility Expo 2017 is happening on October 23 and 24, 2017 in Springfield, IL.  The DHS Bureau of Early Intervention is participating in the expo this year along with approximately 120 different exhibitors.  In the center of the exhibitor's hall, Zot Artz will provide interactive art experiences for all abilities.

  • Explore New Products
  • Essentials for Educators & Seniors
  • Mini AAC Conference (contact IATP to register)
  • Network with Colleagues
  • Low Tech Make & Take (for a small fee)
  • Win Door Prizes

For more information, please contact the Illinois Assistive Technology Program at 1-800-852-5110 or email Sponsorship & vendor opportunities are still available.

Please share the IATP Statewide disAbility Expo 2017 flyer (pdf) with anyone you feel may benefit from this great event!

 Sharing a Vision Logo
Reminder: Sharing a Vision Conference Registration Open

Sharing A Vision (SAV) 2017 registration is open! SAV will be held at the Embassy Suites and Conference Center in East Peoria, October 25-27 and will host approximately 75 sessions with EI credit available.  Please view the full registration brochure for more information about presenters and sessions.   Click here to download the conference brochure. To register, please visit 

MFLN Virtual Conference: Learning through Change
 MFLN Online Conference

Change is hard!  Do you feel change accelerating in your professional or personal life? Do you thrive on workplace change? Join the Military Family Learning Network for the MFLN Virtual Conference: Learning through Change to learn how to ADAPT to change, GROW your understanding of your capacity for change, and THRIVE as you connect with colleagues facing similar challenges.

The MFLN Virtual Conference is a free four-day virtual learning and networking experience for professionals working with military service members and their families.

From September 26-29, join hundreds of military family service providers and Cooperative Extension professionals for four incredible days of free learning and networking you don’t want to miss!

Register now at

Questions about the Virtual Conference? Email us at

New Illinois Early Learning Project Website
 Illinois Early Learning Project website

The Illinois Early Learning Project (IEL) website is a source of evidence-based, reliable information on early care and education for families, caregivers, and teachers of young children in Illinois.

The IEL website houses excellent resources, such as the following:

  • Tip Sheets: IEL Tip Sheets are easy-to-read, one-page resources on a variety of topics of interest to parents and teachers of young children.
  • Videos: IEL features videos related to Parenting, the Illinois Early Learning Guidelines for Birth to 3, Benchmarks and Early Learning Moments!

These resources and more can be found at  Please be sure to bookmark the page and share with your families!

Resources You Can Use
Report Writing in Early Intervention

Wanting to enhance your writing skills?  Thinking about becoming an evaluator? Here are some questions you can use to reflect upon your reports.

  • Have I provided enough detail to give a good picture of this child & family?
  • Have I explained the meaning of my evaluation/assessment results & communicated clearly?
  • Does my report accurately describe what was observed & reported?
  • Did I report on strengths & challenges of the child & family?
  • Is the report easily understood by anyone?
  • Did I explain all acronyms used & avoid the use of jargon?
  • Is the report objective & accurate?
  • Is it free from personal bias?
  • Is the report strength based?
  • Will the report help to build the family-professional partnership?

For additional resources including the new report format and tips, check out EITP Resource Page on Evaluation/Assessment and Eligibility at

Video: Helpful Tips for Completing a Benefit Verification

The Early Intervention Central Billing Office (EICBO) is pleased to announce the release of a new video titled “Helpful Tips for Completing a Benefit Verification (BV)”.  It is located on the EICBO Provider page.

The video reviews things to consider before starting services with participants with private insurance coverage, questions to ask when completing a BV and important information to consider after the completion of the BV call. Please help us share with your colleagues and view the video at your convenience.

Video: Supporting Children By Improving Family Outcomes
 Video on Family Outcomes
 Video on Family Outcomes

All programs that serve young children and their families can improve outcomes for children by making a difference for their families. ECTA Center and DaSy Center have shared their newest resource - a video that describes the importance of supporting families, collecting data on family outcomes, and using the data to improve the program. This video is intended for program staff, leaders, and families in all programs for young children, including early childhood special education, early intervention, and child care.

This video highlights how three families who received early intervention benefited from support to their family. Supporting Children By Improving Family Outcomes is a companion to the video Child Outcomes: Step-By-Step. Closed captions are available in both English and Spanish.

Video could not be embedded into article due to privacy settings

2017 CFC Conference Website
 2017 CFC Conference Website
 2017 CFC Conference Website

Did you miss the Child and Family Connections (CFC) Conferences this spring? Even if you attended, did you miss a session you wanted to attend or want a copy of the PPT from a presentation?  

EITP has created a website with all the materials and resources from the 2017 CFC conferences (North and South) so everyone can have access to great information shared at these conferences!

The new page,, contains links, materials, and handouts from the 2017 CFC Conferences around the theme of "Making Every Connection Matter".  

Family Scholarships for DEC Conference
 DEC Conference

Did you know DEC provides scholarships to members of families with young children (between ages 0 and 8) with special needs who want to attend their annual conference?

The Division of Early Childhood (DEC) 2017 conference is coming up on October 4th-6th in Portland, OR.  This conference brings together a passionate group of dedicated individuals who work with or on behalf of young children (0-8) with special needs and their families. Leading experts will gather from all over the world to unite with other participants and attendees who are intimately invested in early intervention, early childhood special education, and related disciplines.

The Family Scholarship covers the cost of conference registration for the family members who apply to attend!  To learn more, please visit

Free YEC Journal Article
 YEC DEC logo
“Voices from the Field: A Case for Family Coaching in Early Intervention”

In each Newsletter, EITP will highlight a free article focused on Early Intervention that will be available for PDF download from the Young Exceptional Children journal!  

Currently, we are featuring “Voices from the field: A Case for Family Coaching in Early Intervention” by Diane Branson from Young Exceptional Children, v18, March 2015.  This link will be open until December 15, 2017.

Diane Branson is the 2013 recipient of the Rose C. Engel Award for Excellence in Professional Practice and a speech language pathologist by training.  This article discusses the importance of family coaching in early intervention using several sources to support and validate the implementation of key coaching concepts while working with families in EI.  This article also helps identify and understand coaching in EI, as well as barriers to practice.

Service Coordinator Corner
Talking With Families About Family Fees

Talking to families about family fees may be one of the most awkward responsibilities of service coordinators.  One of the key aspects in mastering this task is the approach that service coordinators take.  Presenting the information in a knowledgeable and sensitive way is central.   Here are some tips that may help service coordinators become more comfortable in the process.

  1. Understand the information that you are presenting to the family. This may mean checking in with your supervisor, reviewing the Family Fee Video and getting any clarification you may need.
  2. Build the relationship with the family before discussing family fees. It does not have to be the first thing you talk about.  Weave family fees in your conversation about early intervention.
  3. Explain why family fees are collected. This begins with discussing what is subject to fees and what is provided at no cost. Discuss ability to pay and changes to family size and income. 
  4. Take time to review the Illinois EI Services Family Participation Fees Program Fact Sheet (pdf) (also in Spanish). This notice provides a lot of information including sample bills from the Central Billing Office
  5. Direct families to view the Central Billing Office family page on their website - offer to help them pull up this website on their phone (if they have one and are okay using it for this).
  6. Check in often to ensure families understand especially when the first statement comes in.  You may need to walk the family through their first bill. This is a great thing to review in your monthly contacts with families!

Some additional resources that may help is the CFC Section fo the EICBO website and the EITP resource page on Famiy Fees.

IL Service Coordination Community of Practice (IL SC CoP)

The Illinois Service Coordination Community of Practice (IL SC CoP) is a place for SCs to support each other in the important work they do!  The first meeting was held in July, and a team of leaders is working together to plan for the next meeting on 10/11/17 from 10:00 am-11:15 am around the topic of Child Outcomes. A registration link will be sent to IL SC CoP members and all CFC offices soon.  Don't miss out on this opportunity! SCs interested in learning more or getting involved may contact Sarah Nichols at

CFC Service Coordinator Trainer Forum

The CFC SC Trainer Forum meets quarterly and is a place for those who prepare and support SCs to partner with one another across the state.  Meeting topics are driven by CFC SC Trainer Forum members and thus far have included Transition, Child Outcomes, and Preparing New Hires.  EITP is working with forum members to develop new resources and materials as a result of these topical discussions. 

EITP is also in the process of recruiting CFC SC Trainer Forum members who are interested in fulfilling a leadership role within this community of practice and will begin planning for future meetings in 2018 over the next few months.  To learn more about the CFC SC Trainer Forum please contact Sarah Nichols at

SSIP Updates
State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP) First Quarter Update

We recently began Phase III, Year 2 of the implementation phase and are very excited by what we see happening!

  • Local Leadership Teams (LTs) in the 3 pilot areas (Aurora, Williamson County, and East St. Louis) continue to offer professional development around the Child Outcomes Summary (COS) process.
  • Local LTs are also engaging the providers and service coordinators in focused conversations to address their challenges as they implement the desired COS process.
  • Local LTs also received the evaluation data from their initial Professional Development (PD) offerings. Evaluations indicate that the offerings are achieving their desired outcomes. Teams will use this information to continue to refine their work and plan next steps.
  • The PD rubric that we developed was highlighted during a session at the OSEP Leadership Conference in July and will be the subject of a poster session at the DEC Conference in October. It also continues to be used to improve our statewide PD.
  • Resource Guides for supporting the COS process are nearing completion and should be available for use by the LTs very soon!
  • The Messaging workgroup has been diligently working on a referral brochure to help primary referral sources better understand their responsibilities and the early intervention system.
  • Those using the desired COS process report greater engagement of families and more useful discussions.

This year, we will continue our efforts to complete and evaluate the activities and short-term outcomes related to COS and begin shifting our focus to the improvement strategy related to evidence-based intervention practices. These practices will strengthen our EI family-centered system by supporting family capacity-building, family engagement and family decision making.

We welcome everyone’s input so if you have any comments, please email them to

Upcoming Events
Upcoming Events
Upcoming Events from EITP and others

To view upcoming events sponsored by EITP only, please visit

For a list of online trainings offered by EITP, please visit our EITP Online Events Calendar.

For a list of events sponsored by other entities (non-EITP events), please see the Non-EITP Events Calendar.