08.04.01 - Special Needs

Effective Date: 07/01/00

Reference: None

Policy Statement:


Program Overview:

The Bureau of Child Care and Development has two statewide initiatives to support the inclusion of children with special needs/disabilities in child care settings.

The first initiative, Special Care Outreach, is designed to support a statewide cadre of trainers. These trainers provide six to eight-hour training seminars to child care providers on the topic of inclusive child care. The purpose of the training is to increase child care providers’ knowledge and level of comfort, so they are willing and able to extend their traditional roles to care for children with special needs/disabilities.

The second initiative provides an “add-on” rate to the standard child care assistance daily rate for children eligible for child care assistance who also have a disability. Site-administered contract providers who care for eligible children with a demonstrated disability are able to apply for a 20 percent special need add-on rate. The additional funds are used by the provider for supports such as the purchase of adaptive equipment and securing specialized training for the care giver.

Additionally, in an attempt to increase the number of young children in Illinois that receive developmental screening, a new statewide curriculum is being planned that compliments the Special Care training. Developmental Screening training for child care providers will be developed in FY03 and will be implemented upon completion. The curriculum will cover best practices for offering developmental screening in all types of child care settings. Specifically, the training will cover what developmental screening is; how to prepare for and implement screening using a user-friendly tool that collects both parent and provider input; how to share results; and what community resources for referral are available.

For information on any of these programs, call the Bureau of Child Care and Development’s Chicago office at 312/793-3610.