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Click here to see this online
Early Intervention Training Program Newsletter, Winter 2019
News and Updates
 Closed for the Holidays
EITP Office Closed for the Holidays

The EITP Offices will be closed on Tuesday, December 24, 2019 to Wednesday, January 1, 2020 in observance of the holidays. While our offices are closed, EITP will not be able to provide technical support for online training modules.  Please plan accordingly. 

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

 Winter Weather
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.

Get to Know the DEC Recommended Practices
Family Capacity-Building Practices

In our EITP Fall 2019 Newsletter,  we provided an overview of the Division for Early Childhood Recommended Practices (DEC RPs).  Because engaging families in early intervention (EI) services is critical for success, we are continuing our focus on the Family practices within the DEC RPs by spotlighting practices that support family capacity-building

Family capacity-building practices involve the participatory opportunities and experiences we give to families that strengthen their existing knowledge and skills and promote the development of new abilities that enhance parenting self-efficacy beliefs and practices.  

What are the Practices that support Family Capacity-Building?

F5. Practitioners support family functioning, promote family confidence and competence, and strengthen family-child relationships by acting in ways that recognize and build on family strengths and capacities.

F6. Practitioners engage the family in opportunities that support and strengthen parenting knowledge and skills and parenting competence and confidence in ways that are flexible, individualized, and tailored to the family’s preferences.

Download a table of what the family capacity-building practices look like and don’t look like.

Tip:  After review the above examples or additional examples of DEC RPs, reflect on your own practices.  Individually or collaboratively with a family or team member, consider what you do well and what could be improved.  

Explore the following activities to extend your learning!


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  Family Practitioner Guide 4: Family Capacity Building in Early Childhood Intervention 


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  Service Provider Prepares a Mom for a Phone Call


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  Professional Roles in Early Childhood Intervention English or Spanish


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Finding a Common Lens: Competencies Across Professional Disciplines Providing Early Childhood Intervention

Tip: Use this to reflect with your fellow team members as you collaborate and engage in family-centered practices and support capacity-building within families.

Where can I learn more about the DEC RPs?

Be sure to follow us on Facebook if you want to receive additional resources, encouragement, and opportunities to engage with others on the DEC RPs throughout the year!  You can also visit the DEC RPs website which has numerous resources connected to the RPs, including examples of what they look like in practice.  Additional resources can also be found by visiting the ECTA Center's Practice Improvement Tools: Using the DEC Recommended Practice, especially the Family topic and tools.

Resources You Can Use
 Documentation tip sheet
Documentation Tip Sheet

Complete and accurate documentation provides a comprehensive picture of all the services provided on behalf of a child and family.  This includes direct services, IFSP development activities, and other tasks such as leaving messages, emails, faxing documents, etc.

Therefore, EITP has developed a new one-page Documentation Tip Sheet (pdf) to help providers with Documentation in the Illinois Early Intervention System! The tip sheet includes rules, reminders and tips in a colorful format that puts everything in one place! The PDF is now included in the revised SOFU packet and can be found on our Virtual Office Hours page and Billing and Documentation page.

DEC Communities of Practice

DEC Communities of Practice (CoP) are communities of professionals and families created within and by DEC members and non-members. Communities of Practice are formed to foster connections, further knowledge, and engage in conversations and activities around a common interest.

Early Intervention:  The Early Intervention CoP is a place where your voice can be heard and where you can gain new insights about working with families of infants and toddlers (birth to age 3) with developmental delays or disabilities. This is the place to pose questions, share ideas, problem solve, and discuss any early intervention topics of interest to you. You can also find resources specific to your interests and enhance your work in early intervention.

Service Coordination: The Service Coordination Community of Practice (SC CoP) was created to recognize the value of service coordinators and give these important early intervention team members a professional home. The SC CoP offers service coordinators the opportunities to network with others across the nation, share SC-related resources and tips, and learn about topics relevant to providing high quality service coordination.  

Leadership: The DEC Leadership Community of Practice is open to any DEC member who shares an interest in leadership as a concept or a practice and wants to affiliate with others to develop leadership capacity in themselves and in the field of early childhood special education. Members come together in several ways, including face-to-face meetings at the DEC Conference and through digital means to build and manage the knowledge they need.

Protection and Well-Being: This CoP will provide guidance to the early childhood special education field regarding ways to 1.  Prevent and reduce instances of maltreatment among young children with disabilities;  2.  Intervene and support young children with disabilities who have experienced maltreatment; 3.  Carry out the long- and short-term goals of the DEC position statement.

Please review the DEC Guide to CoPs or CoP page for more details

 COS Resource Package - Image of page 1 of user guide
Child Outcome Summary Process Resource Package

Developed by EITP for the SSIP LTs, the Child Outcome Summary Process Resource Package is available on our CFC Page to further support early intervention professionals’ knowledge and utilization of the federally mandated Child Outcomes Summary (COS) process. This tool was developed and adapted from the Child Outcomes Summary – Team Collaboration (COS-TC) Toolkit. Additionally, many resources from the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA) and The Center for IDEA Early Childhood Data Systems (DaSy) Center are included in this package.

The activities are divided into the following five sections:

The overall intentions of this resource package, in its entirety, is to 1) support professionals’ understanding of the COS process, 2) strengthen professionals’ capacities and confidence with reaching accurate and
reliable COS ratings, and 3) highlight practices to promote collaboration and involvement of all team members involved in the COS process.

Free YEC Journal Article
Assessing the Home Environment to Promote Infant-Toddler Learning
 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!  

Within the winter months, most families in Illinois are staying indoors!  Therefore, we are featuring "Assessing the Home Environment to Promote Infant-Toddler Learning Within Everyday Family Routines" by Bonnie Keilty Young Exceptional Children (OnlineFirst) to help support providers in Illinois Early Intervention. 

Excerpt:  The purpose of this article is to share the importance of social, physical, and temporal environments to child learning in home routines and ways to assess environmental strengths and needs respectful of individual family strengths, priorities, and culture.

Service Coordinator Corner

The role of the Service Coordinator is critical in EI. There are many Illinois and national initiatives underway.  Here are some great resources you can use in your work:

Worksheet on Family Capacity-Building Practices from the DEC RPs

Have you thought about what the family capacity-building practices from this newsletter look like for service coordinators? Check out this worksheet to review examples that apply specifically to service coordinators and reflect on your strengths, challenges and supports needed with regards to these practices. You also can use this worksheet with a peer or fellow team member to get feedback on practices that could be improved or are successful.

Tip for Program Managers or local SC Trainers: Consider using this activity with service coordinators within a staff meeting. 

Resources to build family capacity through coaching:

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 want more information about either of these groups please contact Sarah Nichols.

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

As the implementation phase continues, we are excited by the positive changes occurring. Our primary focus is now on our family engagement improvement strategy. Leadership teams continue to plan and support professional development offerings in their area based on local needs. We have begun our work on the development and refinement of a practice fidelity tool. We have collected input from a variety of stakeholders and will be working with a national technical assistance center to consolidate and use this information. We are continuing to refine the evaluation plan in hopes of including more intermediate measures that demonstrate our progress. We also know that our next submission will need to include our plans for scale up and sustainability, so those discussions are also underway. It’s an exciting time to be in early intervention! We benefit from stakeholder input so if you have any comments, please email Chelsea Guillen.

Upcoming Events
Upcoming Events 

To view upcoming events sponsored by EITP, please visit https://go.illinois.edu/EITPevents.

To view online trainings sponsored by EITP, please visit https://go.illinois.edu/EITPonline.

To view upcoming events sponsored by other entities (non-EITP events) that are eligible for EI credit, please visit the Non-EITP Events Calendar (https://eitp.education.illinois.edu/nonEITPevents.html).