April 3, 2014 - Illinois Interagency Council on Early Intervention


Open to the general public.


10:00 am to 1:00 pm


UCP/Seguin of Greater Chicago
7550 W. 183rd Street
Tinley Park, IL 60477


  1. Introduction of Council Members
  2. Approval of 1/9/2014 Draft Meeting Report
  3. System Videos
  4. Innovation Zones
  5. SSIP Update
  6. Service Delivery Approaches Workgroup
  7. Telehealth Update
  8. Discussion of HB 4407
  9. Adjournment

 Meeting Report


  • J. Diane Adams-Alsberry, CALM, Inc.
  • Karen Berman, IL Early Learning Council Designee
  • Bob Cammarata, ICG Health Care Services
  • Gerri Clark, Division of Specialized Care for Children (DSCC)
  • Brenda Devito, CFC #6 ManagerContact Information
  • Margaret Harkness, IL Council on Developmental Disabilities
  •  Beatrice Nichols, IICEI Chairperson, Head Start
  • Pam Reising-Rechner, IL State Board of Education
  • Kathy Schrock, Easter Seals DuPage and Fox Valley
  • Constance Williams, PhD, DHS/Division of Mental Health
  •  Susan Tromley, IL Department of Children and Family Services
  •  Amy Zimmerman, Health & Disabilities Advocates


  • Julie Doetsch, IL Dept of Healthcare and Family Services
  •  Sheila McCurley, IL Department of Public Health
  • Mary Petersen, Department of Insurance
  • Deanna Pratscher, parent, Thornton
  • Gina Ruther, DHS, Bureau of Child Care and Development
  • Connie Sims, DHS, Division of Developmental Disabilities
  •  Amy Tarr, Division of Family and Community Services
  • Therese Wehman, Elmhurst College

Contents of Council Packet:

  • Agenda
  • Draft Council Report - January 9, 2014 Meeting
  • Early Intervention Program Caseload Summary Report
  • HB4407 and HAM02
  • Draft Reimbursement Policy

Introduction of Council Members

Council members introduced themselves

Approval of January 9, 2014 Meeting Report

The January 9, 2014 Meeting Report was approved, with attendance corrected. Bob Cammarata discussed the Week of the Child. CFC managers and staff in the audience shared Week of the Child events that CFC offices are participating in. The importance of this work was recognized.

 Systems Video

An Early Intervention (EI) video from Virginia, "Early Intervention: A Routines-Based Approach, Part 1" was shown. An update was provided on the two videos being produced by the EI Training Program, with support from a U of I public enhancement grant. These videos include one on EI's role in the child care setting and a family video on what EI is and what it looks like for families. A link to the Virginia video will be sent to council members. Regarding the child care video, it was advised that new screening and inclusion requirements for child care as part of the QRIS system be included. 

 Innovation Zones

Leah Pouw, Director of Program Innovation at Illinois Action for Children, provided an overview of the Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge Grant Innovation Zones, beginning with information about the overall focus and structure. The seven Innovation Zones were identified and information was shared about how they were selected, what the planning process looks like, and what will be accomplished in the zones, with specific examples given. CFC offices are participating in the planning process, along with other key stakeholders.

The zones with an EI-related focus include Aurora, Pilsen/Little village, Williamson County, and Greater East St. Louis. Leah Pouw was asked how to get local staff connected. Information was shared about the Cicero Innovation Zone, including work that will be done through parent ambassadors. It was requested that, when available, a document with the focus and strategies of the Innovation Zones be shared with the council. Bridging the gap for children leaving EI was discussed. Alignment of Innovation Zone work with EI was encouraged

State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP) Update

Sandy Schmitz, with North Central Regional Resource Center (NCRRC), provided an over view of the SSIP process, including the vision and details of the planning and implementation phases. There was a discussion about how to keep the Early Learning Council informed, involved, and aligned with the process. The need for stakeholder input was explained. It was suggested that the SSIP be an agenda item on the council agenda on an ongoing basis. Coordination with Part B was encouraged.

Eileen DeRoze provided an overview of data analysis that has been completed through a partnership between the bureau and NCRRC. This work emphasizes identifying a measurable result for infants and toddlers and the root causes to low performance. Initial work on the impact of placement, quality of services and parental involvement on child and family outcomes was briefly described. More time was spent looking at data from the Innovation Zones, drilling down to low participation in specific zip code areas. Further steps will involve identifying the characteristics of families who are likely to drop out and why; determining the percent of kids that transition to Part B preschool from EI, and determining the extent to which EI impacts preschool readiness.

The floor was open for initial reactions, comments, and suggestions, with efforts made to identify what the council would like its role to be as a primary stakeholder. Active participation in the process was request by several members. Again, the need to reach out to other external bodies, including the Early Learning Council, was recognized. It was requested that the PowerPoint presentation be sent to council members. It was advised that stakeholders become involved in the process.

 Service Delivery Approaches (SDA) Workgroup

Chelsea Guillen reported that three face-to-face meetings of the SDA Workgroup have been held since the last council meeting. The group has described an approach to teaming. The following products are either completed are likely to be completed prior to the next council meeting and can be shared with the council for discussion. They include IFSP implementation challenges and vision, IL Model of Team Interaction, a teaming implementation guide (what it looks like and what it doesn't look like), and transition challenges and vision. With support from Sandy Schmitz regarding implementation science and the work of a U of I graduate student, the workgroup will begin to formulate overall recommendations and a plan for implementation activities and timelines. Changes to the evaluation/assessment tool list will be available soon for council review/approval.

 Telehealth Update

Kathy Schrock discussed steps that have been taken to gather information from other states about use of tele-therapy in EI. The lack of Medicaid reimbursement has been identified as one of the largest barriers. The council considered whether to move forward with a pilot and agreed to the following motion. To address service delays related to low incidence populations and geographic barriers, the Council recommends that the Bureau pilots tele-therapy for a select area or low incidence population which will be determined by the Bureau.

Constance Williams informed the group that the Division of Mental Health has several programs in regions 4 and 5 that are using tele-psychiatry. Information from these programs regarding technology would be helpful. It was recognized that tele-therapy may help address service delays.

Discussion of HB4407

Eileen DeRoze provided information about HB4407 and House Amendment #2. She explained that the amendment (i.e., clarification that children will continue to receive appropriate EI services during the pendency of any state complaint procedure, due process hearing, or mediation) reflects current practice. This amendment is moving forward.

The portion of HB4407 concerning the requirement that all early intervention services be initiated as soon as possible, but not more than 30 days after parental consent has been obtained for the Individualized Family Services Plan (IFSP) is not moving forward. Several steps are being taken. First, the Cornerstone system will be updated to allow sufficient information to allow data for service delay tracking and reporting to be pulled directly from the system, with these changes released in an October - December 2014 timeframe. Second, the council will consider whether it, as a whole or through workgroup, will review and make recommendations to a proposed parent reimbursement policy.

Amy Zimmerman described her rationale for the bill, including establishing guidance similar to the Part B requirement for implementation of the IEP within 10 days. The need for changes in the Cornerstone system was explained Brenda Devito cautioned that complete data about delays needs to be collected, not just parent consent. It was noted that the "stay put" provision provides clarity.

Beatrice Nichols received consensus that, if a workgroup to review the proposed parent reimbursement policy was formed, it would be formed the same way as previous council workgroups. Members decided that a workgroup would be formed. There was some disagreement about the scope of the workgroup. It was suggested that CFC managers and parents be included in the group. Council members were asked to send an E-mail to Eileen DeRoze if they were interested in participating in the group.


The following was shared in response to questions.

  • Changes to the EI rule were approved by JCAR.
  • The Governor's proposed budget for SFY15 includes an $8.0 million increase. SFY14 shortfall is being monitored, with efforts being made to address it.

The meeting adjourned at 1:00 p.m.

Contact Information

Jenni Grissom
IDHS - Bureau of Early Intervention
823 East Monroe
Springfield, IL 62701
Ph: 217/524-1596

email: jennifer.grissom@illinois.gov