Indicator #6 - Participation in Early Intervention for Children Under the Age of Three

Helping Families. Supporting Communities. Empowering Individuals.

Early Intervention
Illinois Annual Performance Report

Part C State Annual Performance Report for (FFY07)
(OMB NO: 1820-0578 / Expiration Date: 12/31/2009)

Participation in Early Intervention for Children Under the Age of Three


Part C State Annual Performance Report (APR) for FFY 07/SFY 08

Overview of the Annual Performance Report Development:

The Illinois APR documents performance data on State targets for each Child and Family Connections (CFC) office and documents CFC and state progress or slippage toward measurable and rigorous targets. The Illinois Early Intervention (EI) Program makes the Illinois APR and State Performance Plan (SPP) available on its web site and through links from the other EI web sites (the Illinois Early Intervention Training Program; Provider Connections, the Early Intervention credentialing office; and the Early Childhood Intervention Clearinghouse). The APR and SPP documents are also available to the public at each of the 25 CFC offices.

The APR is part an ongoing process of performance measurement and strategic planning for the Illinois Early Intervention Program. For a number of years, Illinois has been reporting performance data to key stakeholders including the Illinois Interagency Council on Early Intervention (IICEI), the Child and Family Connections (CFC) offices, and the general public through various reporting mechanisms. Work groups of the IICEI have been formed to address specific indicators (Service Delay Work Group and Transition Work Group) and overall operation issues (Finance Work Group). These work groups have helped analyze data and suggest improvement strategies.

Illinois utilizes a central client tracking system, Cornerstone. No activity can take place without a case being active in Cornerstone. Both service coordination agencies (CFCs) and the central office can pull reports to track the size and movement of caseloads at any point. Since January 2002, the program has also utilized a standardized monthly reporting system on a series of performance measures, including total caseload and participation rate. Since the beginning of SFY 03 (July 1, 2002), Illinois has operated a performance contracting system for CFCs, based on some of the more important measures found in the monthly statistical reports. Participation rates are reported for each CFC each month and this is one of the measures that carries performance contacting incentive funding.

The bulk of funding for service coordination is distributed based on average caseloads over a recent period. Incentive funding is also distributed to CFCs that do the best job of limiting the number of families that leave intake or IFSP by choice or because we cannot find them. Other incentives can be earned for doing the best job of completing IFSPs within 45-days and by providing the shortest average time between referral and initial IFSP. All of these factors have lead to a heightened awareness of the importance of child find, good customer service and, ultimately, to higher participation rates. For instance, the reduction in the average time in intake from almost 80 days to under 30 days has resulted in an ongoing increase of approximately 2,000 children receiving IFSP services.

All of these activities are not only shared with CFCs monthly but also with the Illinois Interagency Council on Early Intervention (IICEI), as well as in other public forums, as appropriate. As a result of this continuous attention to child find and participation rate and reporting on these activities, development of the APR only requires summarizing data already collected and distributed for FFY 07/SFY 08.

During FFY 08/SFY 09 Illinois state finances took a serious downturn. The situation for FFY 09/SFY 10 looked significantly worse but program trends pointed to the need for a significant increase in revenues, revenues that are not and will not be available. With the help of the Illinois Interagency Council on Early Intervention (IICEI), the program had already taken a series of steps to make the program more efficient and effective but those actions were not enough, given the scale of the problem.

The only conventional step left to take would be to increase the program eligibility standards. This is a step everyone wants to avoid. So, the program reviewed program data to identify steps that could be taken that would support program principles but also save money. Data reports found significant differences in eligibility determination between different parts of the state. There also are similar differences in the amount of services authorized. In both instances it does not appear we are seeing violations of the letter of program rules and law. Thus, nothing objectionable will be found in individual file reviews. However, what is happening does violate the spirit of the program. In too many cases the flexibility in the eligibility determination process is being used to get around the stated requirement of a 30% developmental delay. In other instances it is clear that case plans are being written in a siloed medical model that is costly and burdensome for the family, instead of being written to coach the family and maximize the impact of services.

To address this problem and avoid changing eligibility levels, the program will be implementing a new monitoring process we are calling System Ombudsman. This process will use data reports to identify where individual areas are performing outside of the average range. The System Ombudsman make

on-site visits to conduct direct observation of plan development as well as directed file reviews, based on data pulls. The Ombudsman will make recommendations to the local community on changes needed to better conform with state norms and the EI program philosophy. While the Ombudsman will make observations based on individual cases, their findings and work will be forward looking. As the name implies, the position will be geared to making system improvement. They will not attempt to impact any individual cases.

Analysis of systemic differences in program administration between CFCs and the creation of a System Ombudsman function did not affect the collection of data for this report. However, we believe what has been found has contributed to caseload growth now and in the past. Also, we believe that implementation of the System Ombudsman function will result in a notable reduction in the caseload during the later part of FFY08/SFY09 and through FFY09/SFY10. We have estimated the impact and adjusted our goals for the remaining years of the SPP accordingly.

Monitoring Priority: Effective General Supervision Part C / Child Find

Indicator 6: Percent of infants and toddlers birth to 3 with IFSPs compared to:

  1. Other States with similar eligibility definitions; and
  2. National data.

(20 U.S.C. 1416(a)(3)(B) and 1442)

Measurement:

  1. Percent = [(# of infants and toddlers birth to 3 with IFSPs) divided by the (population of infants and toddlers birth to 3)] times 100 compared to the same percent calculated for other States with similar (narrow, moderate or broad) eligibility definitions.
  2. Percent = [(# of infants and toddlers birth to 3 with IFSPs) divided by the (population of infants and toddlers birth to 3)] times 100 compared to National data.

FFY: 2007 (2007-2008)

Measurable and Rigorous Target: The percentage of all children in Illinois under age 3 served through an IFSP will be at least 3.32% on June 30, 2008, approximately 18,020 children.

Actual Target Date for FFY07/SFY08: On June 30, 2008, 18,467 children, representing 3.44% of all children in Illinois under age 3, received services through an IFPS.(18,467/536,149)*100=3.44%

Actual Target Data for FFY 07/SFY 08:

Participation Rate Goals & Actual Caseloads June 30, 2007 FFY06/SFY 07 Goal June 30, 2008 FFY07/SFY 08 Goal
Children with IFSPs 17,654 17,593 18,467 18,020
Participation Rate 3.31% 3.24% 3.44% 3.32%

On October 31, 2007, Illinois reported 17,489 children under 3 had active IFSPs, equal to a 3.11% participation rate. (17,489/536,149*100=3.26%). That is significantly higher than the 3.11% for the FFY 06 federal report. However, October represents a traditional low point for the caseload. There were 18,467 open cases of children under 3 on June 30, 2008, representing a participation rate of 3.44% (18,467/536,149*100=3.44%). June 30 is both the end of the fiscal year and the traditional high point for the caseload. Illinois' targets are set for June 30. The FFY 07/SFY08 goal of 18,020 was exceeded by 447.

This represented a 6.4% increase between federal 618 reports and a 4.2% increase from the end of FFY06/SFY 07 to the end of FFY07/SFY 08. Illinois' participation rate rank for FFY 06 moved down from 14th to 13th. The FFY07/SFY 08 reported caseload represents a 65.5% increase over five years, compared to just 12.5% nationwide.

2002 - 2007 Participation Rate Comparisons
National & Similar Eligibility States

STATE 2002 2006 2007 Change
% of
Pop.

Rank
% of
Pop.

Rank
% of
Pop.

Rank
1-Year
% Change
5-Year
% Change
States with Moderately Restrictive Eligibility Criteria
RHODE ISLAND 3.50 5 4.39 5 4.61 4 5.0% 31.7%
NEW YORK 4.79 3 4.21 6 4.11 6 -2.4% -14.2%
Indiana 3.67 4 3.66 7 3.44 11 -6.0% -6.3%
ILLINOIS 2.00 27 3.11 14 3.31 13 6.4% 65.5%
South Dakota 2.28 22 2.97 16 3.27 15 10.1% 43.4%
PUERTO RICO * 1.59 37 2.85 17 3.25 16 14.0% 104.4%
NEW JERSEY 2.12 24 2.80 18 2.84 19 1.4% 34.0%
KENTUCKY 2.67 13 2.66 28 2.54 24 -4.5% -4.9%
Delaware 3.29 7 2.66 21 2.4 26 -9.8% -27.1%
North Carolina 1.62 36 2.03 30 2.12 31 4.4% 30.6%
Alaska 2.12 24 1.96 34 1.94 33 -1.0% -8.5%
Colorado 1.45 39 1.92 36 1.92 34 0.0% 32.4%
Minnesota 1.72 34 1.70 42 1.83 38 7.6% 6.4%
Louisiana 1.25 47 1.31 49 1.78 41 35.9% 42.4%
Moderate States # 2.89 2.90 2.99 3.0% 3.5%
Nationwide ^ 2.24 2.43 2.52 3.7% 12.5%

*: Puerto Rico rate and ranking estimated for 2002. OSEP tables did not include population estimates for Puerto Rico. 2002 sub-total Excludes Puerto Rico.

#: Totals excluding children classified as eligible because they are at-risk

^: For states listed as moderately restrictive in that year.

Participation Rate History
% of Children < 3 Served

Rate
December 1, 2002 2.00
June 30, 2003 2.27
December 1, 2003 2.66
June 30, 2004 2.78
December 1, 2004 2.82
June 30, 2005 3.07
December 1, 2005 3.00
June 30, 2006 3.09
Oct. 31, 2006 3.11
June 30, 2007 3.31
Oct. 31, 2007 3.26
June 30, 2008 3.44

Between June 30, 2007 and June 30, 2008, 16 of 25 CFC caseloads saw caseload increases. All 25 have experienced increases in the last six years. Cook County, the collar counties and downstate areas all grew during FFY07/SFY08. Over the last six years, the most substantial growth has taken place in Cook County. The downstate participation rate was slightly higher than Cook County. The collar county participation rate remains the lowest.

NOTE: CFC counts include the small number of cases open over age 3 for up to 30 days to facilitate final closing. No ongoing services can be paid for by EI. Participation rates are calculated based on births, instead of population estimates because population estimates are not available to the necessary level.

Participation Rate History
By CFC & Region 

CFC # & Name End of SFY 02 End of SFY 03 End of SFY 04 End of SFY 05 End of SFY 06 End of SFY 07 End of SFY 08
Rank
FY 08% Change 6 Year
Change
#1 ROCKFORD 2.53% 2.86% 3.38% 3.43% 3.26% 3.33% 3.76% 7 12.9% 48.6%
#2 LAKE COUNTY 1.90% 2.03% 2.61% 2.75% 2.72% 2.57% 2.85% 24 10.9% 50.0%
#3 FREEPORT 2.76% 2.86% 3.34% 3.76% 3.49% 3.80% 3.45% 13 -9.2% 25.0%
#4 KANE-KENDALL 1.78% 2.15% 2.77% 3.06% 2.86% 3.03% 3.07% 21 1.3% 72.5%
#5 DUPAGE COUNTY 1.76% 1.95% 2.73% 2.92% 3.11% 3.24% 3.16% 20 -2.5% 79.5%
#6 N. SUBURBS 1.58% 1.92% 2.60% 2.90% 3.25% 3.62% 4.01% 4 10.8% 153.8%
#7 W. SUBURBS 2.17% 2.30% 2.87% 3.09% 3.43% 3.66% 3.84% 5 4.9% 77.0%
#8 SW CHICAGO 2.12% 2.38% 2.86% 3.19% 3.20% 3.27% 3.43% 14 4.9% 61.8%
#9 CENTRAL CHICAGO 1.93% 2.28% 2.71% 2.73% 3.11% 3.71% 3.65% 8 -1.6% 89.1%
#10 SE CHICAGO 1.98% 2.32% 2.75% 2.99% 3.15% 3.22% 3.03% 23 -5.9% 53.0%
#11 N. CHICAGO 1.43% 1.79% 2.28% 2.49% 2.75% 2.98% 3.31% 18 11.1% 131.5%
#12 S. SUBURBS 2.10% 2.50% 3.23% 3.37% 3.19% 3.33% 3.40% 16 2.1% 61.9%
#13 MACOMB 1.88% 2.32% 2.33% 2.71% 3.11% 3.48% 3.26% 19 -6.3% 73.4%
#14 PEORIA 2.03% 2.11% 2.40% 2.76% 2.90% 3.30% 3.55% 10 7.6% 74.9%
#15 JOLIET 2.21% 2.41% 3.07% 3.37% 3.36% 3.25% 3.53% 12 8.6% 59.7%
#16 BLOOMINGTON 1.79% 2.24% 2.41% 2.79% 2.91% 2.95% 3.42% 15 15.9% 91.1%
#17 QUINCY 2.51% 2.71% 2.63% 2.66% 2.81% 3.75% 3.55% 10 -5.3% 41.4%
#18 SPRINGFIELD 2.65% 3.14% 3.24% 3.46% 3.49% 3.54% 3.78% 6 6.8% 42.6%
#19 DECATUR 2.51% 2.49% 3.02% 3.06% 3.32% 3.70% 3.32% 17 -10.3% 32.3%
#20 EFFINGHAM 3.52% 3.46% 4.02% 4.35% 4.47% 4.67% 4.51% 2 -3.4% 28.1%
#21 BELLEVILLE 1.80% 1.86% 2.26% 2.48% 2.55% 2.57% 2.74% 25 6.6% 52.2%
#22 CENTRALIA 3.99% 4.03% 3.90% 4.36% 4.20% 4.46% 4.42% 3 -0.9% 10.8%
#23 NORRIS CITY 4.58% 6.19% 6.44% 7.82% 6.91% 6.98% 7.95% 1 13.9% 73.6%
#24 CARBONDALE 2.59% 1.82% 2.30% 3.03% 3.04% 2.80% 3.04% 22 8.6% 17.4%
#25 MCHENRY CO. 2.08% 2.49% 3.67% 3.45% 3.17% 3.12% 3.61% 9 15.7% 73.6%
Statewide 2.04% 2.30% 2.84% 3.07% 3.13% 3.30% 3.44% 4.5% 69.1%
Cook (6-12) 1.81% 2.14% 2.68% 2.89% 3.10% 3.35% 3.52% 5.1% 94.5%
Collar (2, 4, 5, 15, 25) 1.93% 2.16% 2.87% 3.06% 3.05% 3.05% 3.21% 5.2% 66.3%
Downstate (Others) 2.54% 2.75% 3.06% 3.38% 3.26% 3.46% 3.58% 3.5% 41.0%

Notes:

  1. Rates inflated about 1.25% due to inclusion of children over 36 months but less than 37 months, waiting for transition process to be finalized,
  2. Review of case counting methodology found that approximately 1.5% of the caseload was being excluded inappropriately as duplicates prior to end of FY 04.

The program's front door, represented by referrals continued to grow steadily through FFY07/ SFY08.

Early Intervention Average Monthly Referrals
12-Month Moving Average

EI Average Monthly Referrals - 12 month moving average

Description of EI Average Monthly Referrals - 12 month moving average - Pop Up Window

Date Referrals
Aug-00 1,354
Sep-00 1,370
Oct-00 1,405
Nov-00 1,434
Dec-00 1,448
Jan-01 1,466
Feb-01 1,481
Mar-01 1,497
Apr-01 1,535
May-01 1,548
Jun-01 1,559
Jul-01 1,576
Aug-01 1,576
Sep-01 1,581
Oct-01 1,596
Nov-01 1,587
Dec-01 1,590
Jan-02 1,611
Feb-02 1,630
Mar-02 1,628
Apr-02 1,652
May-02 1,665
Jun-02 1,660
Jul-02 1,685
Aug-02 1,699
Sep-02 1,724
Oct-02 1,739
Nov-02 1,740
Dec-02 1,754
Jan-03 1,781
Feb-03 1,792
Mar-03 1,811
Apr-03 1,813
May-03 1,810
Jun-03 1,832
Jul-03 1,848
Aug-03 1,865
Sep-03 1,901
Oct-03 1,928
Nov-03 1,939
Dec-03 1,967
Jan-04 1,987
Feb-04 2,017
Mar-04 2,065
Apr-04 2,092
May-04 2,102
Jun-04 2,120
Jul-04 2,127
Aug-04 2,152
Sep-04 2,160
Oct-04 2,157
Nov-04 2,202
Dec-04 2,216
Jan-05 2,230
Feb-05 2,241
Mar-05 2,243
Apr-05 2,254
May-05 2,286
Jun-05 2,317
Jul-05 2,317
Aug-05 2,345
Sep-05 2,352
Oct-05 2,360
Nov-05 2,365
Dec-05 2,362
Jan-06 2,381
Feb-06 2,378
Mar-06 2,381
Apr-06 2,369
May-06 2,395
Jun-06 2,389
Jul-06 2,404
Aug-06 2,409
Sep-06 2,396
Oct-06 2,414
Nov-06 2,424
Dec-06 2,417
Jan-07 2,432
Feb-07 2,442
Mar-07 2,462
Apr-07 2,491
May-07 2,496
Jun-07 2,497
Jul-07 2,515
Aug-07 2,516
Sep-07 2,541
Oct-07 2,577
Nov-07 2,591
Dec-07 2,611
Jan-08 2,633
Feb-08 2,651
Mar-08 2,646
Apr-08 2,686
May-08 2,687
Jun-08 2,708
Jul-08 2,741
Aug-08 2,735
Sep-08 2,774
Oct-08 2,774
Nov-08 2,760

Since EI only has an average case for around 14 months, closings normally rise and fall in sync with openings but lag perhaps a year behind. During FFY 05/SFY 06, growth in new case openings was slowed, which produced a relatively flat number of case closings in FFY 06/SFY 07. It was anticipated the gap between openings and closings would narrow during FFY07/SFY08 but it remained almost constant.

Average New Opened & Closed IFSPs
12 Month moving Average

Average New Opened & Closed IFSPs - 12 Month moving Average

Description of Average New Opened & Closed IFSPs - 12 Month moving Average - Pop Up Window

Date OPEN CLOSE
Aug-00 1,033 670
Sep-00 1,046 701
Oct-00 1,057 741
Nov-00 1,062 784
Dec-00 1,057 809
Jan-01 1,056 841
Feb-01 1,053 874
Mar-01 1,045 907
Apr-01 1,055 948
May-01 1,052 985
Jun-01 1,013 1,019
Jul-01 964 1,046
Aug-01 918 1,050
Sep-01 878 1,047
Oct-01 850 1,054
Nov-01 824 1,045
Dec-01 808 1,033
Jan-02 784 1,019
Feb-02 767 994
Mar-02 743 963
Apr-02 734 941
May-02 723 912
Jun-02 736 873
Jul-02 771 854
Aug-02 800 846
Sep-02 830 843
Oct-02 856 826
Nov-02 875 805
Dec-02 895 812
Jan-03 907 819
Feb-03 923 830
Mar-03 944 841
Apr-03 948 848
May-03 957 852
Jun-03 968 871
Jul-03 986 880
Aug-03 989 893
Sep-03 1,012 906
Oct-03 1,035 919
Nov-03 1,046 930
Dec-03 1,071 946
Jan-04 1,076 955
Feb-04 1,095 962
Mar-04 1,127 979
Apr-04 1,150 993
May-04 1,159 1,006
Jun-04 1,177 1,023
Jul-04 1,172 1,043
Aug-04 1,200 1,072
Sep-04 1,210 1,086
Oct-04 1,210 1,100
Nov-04 1,232 1,129
Dec-04 1,242 1,134
Jan-05 1,263 1,152
Feb-05 1,273 1,165
Mar-05 1,284 1,183
Apr-05 1,284 1,192
May-05 1,299 1,203
Jun-05 1,317 1,217
Jul-05 1,328 1,219
Aug-05 1,332 1,230
Sep-05 1,332 1,238
Oct-05 1,334 1,242
Nov-05 1,342 1,246
Dec-05 1,338 1,253
Jan-06 1,345 1,261
Feb-06 1,346 1,275
Mar-06 1,342 1,284
Apr-06 1,340 1,283
May-06 1,348 1,303
Jun-06 1,356 1,310
Jul-06 1,358 1,315
Aug-06 1,365 1,315
Sep-06 1,366 1,322
Oct-06 1,379 1,329
Nov-06 1,374 1,332
Dec-06 1,376 1,328
Jan-07 1,391 1,337
Feb-07 1,401 1,330
Mar-07 1,399 1,321
Apr-07 1,419 1,338
May-07 1,433 1,338
Jun-07 1,425 1,338
Jul-07 1,441 1,358
Aug-07 1,447 1,353
Sep-07 1,448 1,350
Oct-07 1,457 1,360
Nov-07 1,471 1,365
Dec-07 1,482 1,370
Jan-08 1,485 1,370
Feb-08 1,493 1,382
Mar-08 1,491 1,390
Apr-08 1,500 1,413
May-08 1,494 1,415
Jun-08 1,502 1,416
Jul-08 1,512 1,410
Aug-08 1,505 1,404
Sep-08 1,520 1,430
Oct-08 1,537 1,436
Nov-08 1,527 1,433

The Early Intervention program experiences a distinct seasonal pattern. In most years the caseload is flat during the first half of the year and there then is a spurt between February and June. In the second half of FFY08/SFY09 and FFY09/SFY10 the program will be implementing a Program Integrity Project, discussed previously. It is anticipate that this project will depress the caseload marginally but noticeably for a year by reducing the proportion of referrals found eligible. This impact should be fully realized in 12-14 months, after which a return to modest caseload growth is anticipated.

Early Intervention Individual Family Service Plans (IFSPs)

Early Intervention Individual Family Service Plans (IFSPs)

Description of Early Intervention Individual Family Service Plans (IFSPs) - Pop Up Window

Date IFSPs
Aug-99 7,523
Sep-99 7,769
Oct-99 8,106
Nov-99 8,462
Dec-99 8,671
Jan-00 9,071
Feb-00 9,416
Mar-00 9,956
Apr-00 10,421
May-00 10,917
Jun-00 11,355
Jul-00 11,629
Aug-00 11,874
Sep-00 11,902
Oct-00 11,627
Nov-00 11,638
Dec-00 11,575
Jan-01 11,642
Feb-01 11,627
Mar-01 11,749
Apr-01 11,958
May-01 12,034
Jun-01 11,698
Jul-01 11,109
Aug-01 10,915
Sep-01 10,629
Oct-01 10,292
Nov-01 10,055
Dec-01 9,910
Jan-02 9,876
Feb-02 9,965
Mar-02 10,167
Apr-02 10,511
May-02 10,795
Jun-02 11,061
Jul-02 11,101
Aug-02 10,945
Sep-02 10,989
Oct-02 11,125
Nov-02 11,353
Dec-02 11,339
Jan-03 11,345
Feb-03 11,462
Mar-03 11,759
Apr-03 12,043
May-03 12,364
Jun-03 12,521
Jul-03 12,685
Aug-03 12,703
Sep-03 12,873
Oct-03 13,131
Nov-03 13,369
Dec-03 13,472
Jan-04 13,409
Feb-04 13,706
Mar-04 14,203
Apr-04 14,902
May-04 15,204
Jun-04 15,389
Jul-04 15,305
Aug-04 15,266
Sep-04 15,328
Oct-04 15,385
Nov-04 15,486
Dec-04 15,573
Jan-05 15,499
Feb-05 15,659
Mar-05 15,993
Apr-05 16,220
May-05 16,495
Jun-05 16,647
Jul-05 16,528
Aug-05 16,376
Sep-05 16,329
Oct-05 16,320
Nov-05 16,448
Dec-05 16,399
Jan-06 16,314
Feb-06 16,356
Mar-06 16,522
Apr-06 16,744
May-06 16,859
Jun-06 17,023
Jul-06 16,884
Aug-06 16,829
Sep-06 16,723
Oct-06 16,787
Nov-06 16,812
Dec-06 16,827
Jan-07 16,819
Feb-07 17,071
Mar-07 17,339
Apr-07 17,588
May-07 17,884
Jun-07 17,936
Jul-07 17,753
Aug-07 17,795
Sep-07 17,735
Oct-07 17,767
Nov-07 17,918
Dec-07 18,015
Jan-08 18,043
Feb-08 18,223
Mar-08 18,349
Apr-08 18,432
May-08 18,618
Jun-08 18,764
Jul-08 18,777
Aug-08 18,847
Sep-08 18,659
Oct-08 18,847
Nov-08 18,894

Discussion of Improvement Activities Completed and Explanation of Progress or Slippage that occurred for FFY 07/SFY 08:

Caseload growth exceeded expectation. The program did not introduce any new activities to increase child find and retention but continued to promote and refine its successful activities, including the performance contracting framework that rewards successful child find activities. There was an expectation that growth in referrals would slow but it remained strong. In addition, growth in case closings was not as great as anticipated, due primarily to subtle changes in the age mix of the caseload.

Revisions, with Justification, to Proposed Targets / Improvement Activities / Timelines / Resources for FFY 07/SFY 08:

Illinois has experienced almost interrupted caseload growth since January 2002. This can be tied back to the creation of a strong system of incentives that encourage and support child find. However, at least two factors have led Illinois to develop a new monitoring process to make sure the program is being administered uniformly statewide and in conformity with the philosophy of the program. First, the program grew by 65.5% in six years and it is reasonable to ask all that growth is reasonable. Second, Illinois is experiencing serious financial problems. It is not possible to continue to support rapid program growth if it cannot be justified. A third underlying issue related to state finances is the desire of the whole EI community to avoid changing eligibility standards. We would rather make sure we are only bringing in truly qualified and needy kids under the current system than make a change that would force us to deny services to kids who need them.

It is anticipated that the Program Integrity Project will result in a marginal but noticeable reduction in new initial IFSPs for 12-14 months. As a result, caseload targets are being adjusted as follows:

2008 (2008-2009):
The percentage of all children in Illinois under age 3 served through an IFSP will be at least 3.38% on June 30, 2009, approximately 18,339 children. (No change is recommended for this target.)

2009 (2009-2010): The percentage of all children in Illinois under age 3 served through an IFSP will be at least 3.37% on June 30, 2010, approximately 18,020 children.

2010 (2010-2011): The percentage of all children in Illinois under age 3 served through an IFSP will be at least 3.43% on June 30, 2011, approximately 18,296 children.