Overview of the State Performance Plan Development

The Illinois State Performance Plan (SPP) is the culmination of an ongoing process of performance measurement and strategic planning for the Illinois Early Intervention (EI) Program. Throughout this document, you will read how the program has made good use of data for analysis, problem solving, policy development, and planning. For several 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, an EI Advisory Committee of the Illinois General Assembly, and the general public through various reporting mechanisms. The following are some ongoing and new steps the Illinois EI Program has taken to share information and gather input to its planning process.

  • At Illinois Interagency Council on Early Intervention (IICEI) quarterly meetings, a defined set of data is reported and discussed. Routinely reported data include measures relative to Indicator 5 (infants and toddlers birth to 1 with IFSPs) and Indicator 8 (transition). Performance measures regarding early intervention services in home or community settings (Indicator 2) has been presented and discussed at a number of IICEI meetings. Reporting on service delays (Indicator 1) was added for FFY 07/SFY 08. In its advisory role to the program, the IICEI has utilized these data in making its recommendations. They form workgroups to address specific issues.
  • The EI Program, in conjunction with the IICEI and staff from OSEP and the National Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (NECTAC) held a training session on Illinois Evidence-based Practices in Natural Learning Environments at two locations in Illinois in March 2005. Following the training session, the IICEI conducted a strategic planning session to determine long-term strategies on the provision of services in natural environments to ensure Illinois' compliance with federal requirements.
  • At both the September 8, 2005 IICEI meeting and the September 29, 2005 CFC managers' meeting, a presentation on Illinois data for the SPP monitoring priorities and indicators was given and the content of the SPP was discussed. Both groups provided input to the plan during these meetings and were invited to send additional comments upon further review of the information presented.
  • A week prior to the November 3 IICEI meeting, members received a final draft of the Illinois SPP for their review. The focus of the November 3 meeting was a discussion of this document. The final Illinois SPP reflects this input.
  • By December 1, 2005, the Illinois SPP will be posted on several EI web sites for a 60-day public comment period. The public may submit written comments to the SPP. These comments and the Department's response to them will be sent to OSEP by March 1, 2006. The following chart lists the web sites on which the document will be made available. Families access information predominately from the DHS/EI and the Early Childhood Clearinghouse (parent newsletter and materials on child development and disabilities) web sites. In addition to these two web sites, EI providers often visit the Provider Connections (credentialing/enrollment) and the EI Training Program web sites. The chart includes the number of visitors to these web sites during a recent three-month period.

Use of EI-Related Websites

Web site Web Address # of visits in recent 3-month period
DHS/EI https://www.dhs.state.il.us/ei Unknown
Provider Connections-(Credentialing/Enrollment) http://www.wiu.edu/ProviderConnections 105,703
EI Training Program http://www.illinoiseitraining.org 299,378
Early Intervention Clearinghouse http://www.eiclearinghouse.org 4,337
  • The EI Program will make the Illinois SPP available on its web site and through links from the other EI web sites and will post annual performance reports and any changes to the SPP, as these documents are submitted to OSEP.
  • The plan will also be available at each of the 25 Child and Family Connections offices. A press release will be provided to the media with a link to the plan on the DHS website.

The following is added in conjunction with the submission of the 2005 Annual Performance Report:

During FFY 05/SFY 06, the program used the same system for reporting service delay it has for many years. This is a paper system submitted by CFC offices to the program once a month. These data were entered into a database that maintains the history of delays for the full year. Monthly totals were accumulated and compared to the number of IFSPs for the same periods. The Bureau's EI Specialists reviewed the monthly data and followed-up with individual CFCs, as needed, to determine if there were system problems or local problems related to provider shortages. The EI Specialists worked with CFCs to identify and resolve problems.

Statewide summary data were shared with CFC offices and others. Detailed discussions were held with CFC offices on the meaning of the data and its accuracy. These discussions led to the decision to upgrade the delay reporting system. Although that new system is only now being implemented (January 2007), it is believed that these discussions led to more accurate and uniform reporting. The new reporting system also will improve the program's ability to identify and respond to service delays.

The following is added in conjunction with the submission of the 2006 Annual Performance Report:

The service delay reporting system now in use includes the collection of all possible kinds of service delays, even those not technically considered delays under federal definitions. This includes delays for family reasons, instances where services are started but fewer hours are available than recommended, and instances where service is being delivered in other than the recommended natural setting due to a lack of providers willing to deliver services in the home and community. The report allows for analysis down to the zip code level and includes the number of hours involved for each situation. This allows the program to compile total shortfalls and translate them into FTEs. These reports can be used at both the local and statewide levels to aid recruitment.

An overview of the APR development process can be found under Indicator 1 in the FFY09/SFY10 APR. This process included the establishment of annual targets and improvement activities for the years FFY2011 and FFY2012 that have been included in the February 1, 2011 revision of the SPP. A work group of the IICEI reviewed the APR and met to discuss the indicators, with an emphasis on proposed target values and improvement activities. The APR was presented to the IICEI for review and comment prior to its submission. CFC managers were given the opportunity to review the draft document and provide input. In addition, an Outcomes Work Group provided input to proposed target values and improvement activities for Indicators 3 and 4.