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Early Intervention Training Program Newsletter, Winter 2018
News and Updates
 IDHS Memo about E/A Code Changes
 Click to view memo
Provider Notice about Evaluation/Assessment Code Changes

The Illinois Department of Human Services, Bureau of Early Intervention (EI) has received the federal CMS updates to codes effective January 1, 2019. This memorandum serves to inform all EI Developmental (DT), Occupational (OT), and Physical (PT) Therapists performing evaluations/assessments to begin using procedure code 96112 for dates of service performed after December 31, 2018 and discontinue the use of 96111 with dates of service beginning January 1, 2019. Billing for dates of service after December 31, 2018, using the 96111 (with previously associated modifiers) code will result in a denial of payment once the 96111 code is inactivated in the EI system.

To view the memo, please visit 

 Holiday Office Closure
EITP Office Closure for the Holidays

The EITP Offices will be closed on Monday, December 24, 2018 to Tuesday, January 1, 2019 in observance of the holidays. 

We will resume normal office hours on Wednesday, January 2, 2019. We hope you all have a great holiday season!

Winter Weather and Event Cancellation

In the event that an EITP training is canceled due to severe weather, EITP makes every attempt to notify participants as soon as possible. 

We will send an email to registrants through our Cvent system, post an announcement on our website, and call training sites to best reach people affected by the cancellation.

Alternatively,  if you are concerned about your safety traveling to an event and need to cancel your registration, please visit our Cancellation and Refund Policy page for details.

 EPC Sponsors
Registration Open for the 13th Annual Empowering Professionals Conference

Sponsored collaboratively by the Early Intervention Training Program (EITP), Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago CFC #8 and #12, and the Illinois  Developmental  Therapy Association (IDTA), the 13th annual Empowering Professionals Conference (EPC) is a day designed to encourage and promote best practices in early intervention by supporting early interventionists with opportunities to connect with colleagues and like-minded individuals, to learn and gather resources, and to share and support each other in their work with young children and their families.

This conference, "The Science of Early Intervention", will be held on Friday, March 1, 2019 in Palos Hills, IL and will feature a keynote address by Laura Fish, MS, LMFT, titled "Early Intervention with the Brain in Mind: The brain reasons for behavior" which will be examining the science behind the importance of early intervention for infants and toddlers with disabilities and their caregivers.  The conference also includes Breakouts Sessions, Exhibitors, and Lunch. 

Credit Available: Up to 5.75 hours EI credit + State Licensure Hours (PT, OT, SW, SLP, Dietitian/Nutritionist)


 EITP website relaunch
EITP Websites Relaunch

Our Non-EITP Events and Credit Request pages have gotten a makeover! It has the same data with a new look and feel!  (Past event data is still retained in new sites). Please bookmark the following pages or click to view more:

Non-EITP Events Page: 

Credit Request Page:

 EI Referral Brochures
New EI Referral Brochure

Child Find has released a new brochure for "Referring a Child to Early Intervention" ("La Remisión de un Niño a la Intervención Temprana")! This guide helps community partners refer children to receive supports and services provided by local Child and Family Connections office.  

You can order copies by visiting the Child Find website and clicking on "Public Awareness Materials" tab at the top.

New Module on Childhood Trauma from MFLN
 Click to download flyer
 Click to download flyer

Are you interested in trauma or trauma-informed care?  Do you want to know more about it?  “Childhood Trauma: Understanding, Supporting, and Preventing” is a FREE online module series created by the Military Families Learning Network Early Intervention team and carries EITP EI credits! 

This four-part module is self-paced and offers a high-level overview of such topics as the prevalence and impact of trauma, the manifestation of trauma in young children, providing trauma-informed supports, and preventing trauma.  Additionally, the connection between trauma and disability is explored as well as self-care for those working with children and families who have experienced trauma. 

There is an optional research component to the module for those who may be interested in participating.  To learn more and to register for this FREE offering, go to

Resources You Can Use
 Zero to Three Journal cover
New Zero to Three Journal Article on Strengthening Family-Professional Partnerships in EI

The latest Zero to Three journal (November 2018, Volume 39, No. 2) highlights an article written by EITP collaborators Kristen Schraml-Block and Michealene Ostrosky! The article is titled "Respect, Reciprocity, and Responsiveness: Strengthening Family-Professional Partnerships in Early Intervention" is available for free download for members or for purchase.  

Featuring themes included in the Family-Centered Practices Institute offered by EITP, the article provides a framework for meaningful partnerships between families and early interventionists.

Videos on Families as Leaders

Supporting families to participate in decision-making at the programmatic and policy level is addressed by the DEC Recommended Practices (Family Practice 10), as well as the federal policy statement on family engagement in the early childhood years. These videos were developed to highlight strategies, practices, and approaches for effectively preparing and supporting new, or emerging, family leaders to engage in systems-level advocacy and decision-making. 

For example, in Video 1 at approximately the 6:48 mark, they discuss specific strategies about "preparing families for their involvement", which can help as you invite families to professional meetings such as Evaluation, Assessment, and IFSP meetings!

The videos are available at

Physical Therapists Perspectives in EI

The most recent edition of Infants and Young Children (December 2018) includes an article titled "Physical Therapists’ Perspectives on Importance of the Early Intervention Competencies to Physical Therapy Practice".  The article reinforces the need for self-monitoring, reflection and continued professional development for practice in Early Intervention.

 Toxic Stress Guide
Toxic Stress Guide

Chances are, you’ve heard or read something about toxic stress from a colleague, family, provider, trainer or medical professional. You may feel overwhelmed by all of the toxic stress information out there. And, unfortunately, it’s very easy to find misleading or incorrect information.

The Harvard University Center on the Developing Child created this Guide to Toxic Stress to clear up the confusion and help you learn the facts about toxic stress step by step. This three-step guide provides high-quality resources to introduce or learn more about toxic stress to help you better serve children and families.

Free YEC Journal Article
Guidelines for Collaborating with Interpreters in EI/ECSE
 YEC DEC logo

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

Currently, we are featuring "Guidelines for Collaborating With Interpreters in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education" by Serra Acar and Patricia M. Blasco from Young Exceptional Children, v21, no.3, October 2016.  This link will be open until March 31, 2019.

The following is an excerpt from the article introduction: "Service providers, who are working with culturally and linguistically diverse children and their families, need to collaborate with interpreters to support optimal child and family outcomes (Hanson & Lynch, 2010). Working with certified interpreters could greatly improve the quality of communication and help bridge the gap in areas where barriers exist. Although there is comprehensive literature on working with families from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, there is little in the literature on working with interpreters (Banerjee & Guiberson, 2012). The purpose of this article is twofold: (a) to increase awareness and understanding of the complexity of interpreting in EI/ECSE settings, and (b) to provide practical strategies and techniques that EI/ECSE service providers can implement in their programs to effectively collaborate with interpreters." 

Service Coordinator Corner

The “Service Coordination Corner” is spotlights the important work that service coordinators are doing within the Illinois EI System.

Resources and Updates

National SC Leadership Initiatives

Maria Kastanis and Sarah Nichols traveled to Connecticut in September to meet with 8 other states on national service coordination initiatives.  This group continues to work on national action plans around service coordination knowledge and skills and the identity of service coordinators as professionals in our field. We are proud to say that the professional home for service coordinators has been established with the Division for Early Childhood (DEC).  Stay tuned for more information about a national service coordination community of practice!

IL SC Stakeholder’s Group - Working to EMPOWER, PREPARE, SUPPORT and RETAIN Qualified Service Coordinators in Illinois

This Group includes service coordinators and program managers from across that state as well as EITP staff and IDHS representatives.  The Group meets monthly to work on an Illinois Service Coordination Action Plan with a focus on the knowledge and skills service coordinators need to have to be effective and efficient in their role and the various ways that service coordinators are able to grow as professionals (including the things service coordinators may seek for recognition, satisfaction and leadership development).  As this Group continues to evolve in its work there will likely be opportunities for service coordinators and other stakeholders in the Illinois Early Intervention Program to provide input and suggestions.

National SC Webinars

EITP and the National SC Training Workgroup co-hosted a webinar on October 17, 2018 titled How Do You Do It? - Juggling and Overcoming Service Coordination Challenges.  We had 350 registrants across 12 states and we took a waitlist.  The webinar recording and resources for all National SC Webinars can be accessed via this link:

New Training: Service Coordination Insititute

EITP launched their first institute that was geared toward service coordinators only. The institute called Service Coordination and Family Assessment, Setting the Stage for Functional IFSP Development was launched in Westchester, Illinois. Twenty service coordinators completed the institute including in between activities which covered ecomaps, the ASQ-SE, the Routines-Based Interview.  Service Coordinators used this information to practice writing functional family-centered outcomes.  The next institute is scheduled to begin March 26, 2019 in Mt Vernon, Illinois.  To register: 

Join the Conversation!

The Illinois Service Coordination Community of Practice (IL SC CoP) and CFC SC Trainer Forum continue to meet quarterly and discussions are driven by group members.  If you haven’t joined, or you want more information about either of these groups please contact Sarah Nichols at

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

We are continuing our work on the third year of the implementation phase and hope you enjoy hearing about the positive changes occurring. While we continue to gather more information about the impact of our child outcomes summary process efforts, we are now focusing more attention on our family engagement improvement strategies. We are on the verge of sending the presurvey to leadership teams to understand their learning needs around family engagement and build their capacity. Members of the leadership teams continue to discuss local needs and are beginning to plan for furthering family engagement practices in their local areas. In September, we shared some of the products generated during our SSIP work with other states during a Cross State Learning Collaborative meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona.

As we turn our attention to family engagement, we are finalizing our evaluations of the COS process fidelity. Teams are currently collecting videos to help us understand the impact of the training and support that has been provided. We are excited to see what is happening as a result of these activities and how families and children are benefiting!

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

Upcoming Events
Upcoming Events 

To view upcoming events sponsored by EITP, please visit

To view online trainings sponsored by EITP, please visit

To view upcoming events sponsored by other entities (non-EITP events) that are eligible for EI credit, please visit the Non-EITP Events Calendar (