Chapter 13: Transition - REVISED 02/2014

13.1 Transition Policies and Procedures

  • Transition policies and procedures ensure a smooth transition between the Early Intervention (EI) program under Part C and preschool services under Part B or other appropriate services for all infants and toddlers with disabilities under the age of three who have been receiving EI services and their families.
  • A "toddler that may be eligible for preschool services under Part B" means any toddler in the EI program at 27 months of age that has not yet achieved his/her IFSP developed functional outcomes determined by the IFSP team.
  • No later than six months prior to the child's third birthday, the Service Coordinator shall begin to communicate with the child's family about transition. If a toddler may be eligible for preschool services under Part B, the service coordinator, with parental consent, will transmit additional information to the local educational agencies (LEA) or other relevant agency to ensure continuity of services from the Part C program to the Part B program.
  • 13.1.1 If the parent consents to transition, obtain written parental consent on the Consent to Release of Information form to make transition referrals and to share information from the child's CFC permanent record with the LEA and/or other community program(s) that the child may transition to.
  • NOTE: The end date on the consent form to make referrals and to share information for transition purposes should be the child's birthday. If a child's case is closed prior to the child's third birthday, the consent to make referrals and to share information for transition purposes is still valid until the end date identified on the form.
  • 13.1.2 If the toddler that may be eligible for preschool services under Part B but the parent(s) declines a referral to the LEA, document in Cornerstone Case Notes and update the Cornerstone PA34 appropriately.
  • 13.1.3 If the toddler may be eligible for preschool services under Part B and the parent(s) provides consent for a referral to the LEA, complete the CFC section of the Early Intervention to Early Childhood Tracking form. Send the form and additional information (i.e. referral packet) to the LEA, including a copy of the most recent evaluation(s) and assessment(s) of the child and the family and the most recent IFSP. Send a copy of Educational Rights and Responsibilities: Understanding Special Education In Illinois book or disc to the family or provide a link to the English and Spanish documents at http://www.isbe.net/spec-ed/html/parent_rights.htm#guide.
  • 13.1.4 If a child whose parent(s) provided consent exits the system prior to age three, notify the LEA prior to closing the child's case if a transition referral has already been made. If the notification is not made prior to closing the case, the service coordinator can still notify the LEA up to the end date identified on the Consent for Release of Information form. After the end date identified on the form, either the service coordinator or the LEA representative will have to obtain a new written consent from the family to allow the release of information from the CFC to the LEA.
  • 13.1.5 When a child who is referred for EI services more than 45 days but less than 90 days before his/her third birthday and may be eligible for preschool under Part B services, the CFC must ensure the following steps are taken:
    • Within the required timelines:
      • Initial evaluations
      • Initial assessments
      • Initial IFSP team meetin
      • Initiation of services
    • If the family consents to transition:
      • Be sure to begin the transition process as soon as possible after determining the child's eligibility.
      • Complete the appropriate section of the Early Intervention to Early Childhood Tracking form and forward it to the LEA.
      • Update Cornerstone PA34 appropriately.
      • NOTE: Although a transition planning conference is not required, all other transition steps must be followed.

13.1.6 When a child is referred less than 45 days before his/her third birthday:

  • Explain to the family that Initial evaluations, initial assessment and the initial IFSP team meeting are not required, and;
  • If that child may be eligible for preschool services under Part B, with written parent consent, refer the child to the LEA where the child resides and notify the EI Data Manager, who will notify the SEA and complete the following:
  • Provide the parent with the contact information for LEA in order for parent to directly request evaluation from Part B;
  • In addition, have the parent sign the Consent for Release of Information form to allow releasing information to both the LEA and the SEA;
    • Complete the Early Intervention to Early Childhood Tracking form;
    • Send a copy of the tracking form to the; and
    • If parental consent has been obtained using Consent to Use Personally Identifiable Information (PII) & Bill Public Benefits, update Cornerstone PA34 appropriately and complete Cornerstone Case Notes.

13.2 Transition Notification

  • 13.2.1 Not fewer than 90 days before the third birthday of the toddler with a disability if that toddler may be eligible for preschool services under Part B, transition notification is sent by the Department to the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and by ISBE to the LEA for the area in which the toddler resides. Transition notification includes the following information for toddlers that may be eligible for preschool services under Part B - 1) the child's name, 2) date of birth, 3) and parent contact information (including parent's names, addresses and telephone numbers).
  • 13.2.2 When a child who is referred for EI services more than 45 days but less than 90 days before his/her third birthday may be eligible for preschool services
  • under Part B, transition notification will be sent by the Department as soon as possible after the child's eligibility is determined.
  • 13.2.3 When a child is referred for EI services fewer than 45 days before his/her third birthday and may be eligible for preschool services under Part B, with parental consent, the CFC office should notify the LEA for the area in which the toddler resides and the EI Data Manager, who will notify ISBE.
  • 13.2.4 Transition notification is sent by the Department, with confirmation noted in Cornerstone and included in the child's IFSP, for all children referred to the program more than 45 days before their third birthday.

13.3 Transition Plan

  • 13.3.1 IFSP team meetings must be held not fewer than 90 days and, at the discretion of all parties, not more than 9 months before the toddler's third birthday for the IFSP team, including the family, to develop/update a transition outcome(s) (transition plan) to include steps for the toddler with a disability and his/her family to exit the EI program and any transition services that the IFSP team identifies as needed by that toddler and his/her family. The transition plan should in the IFSPs of all children exiting the EI program less than or equal to 90 days prior to their third birthdays.
  • 13.3.2 The service coordinator should facilitate the IFSP team meeting during which the transition plan is established to ensure that program options for the toddler with a disability for the period from the toddler's third birthday through the remainder of the school year are reviewed and each family is included in the development of the transition plan.
  • 13.3.3 The transition plan in the IFSP should identify the steps to be taken and any other appropriate services to be provided to support a smooth transition including:
    1. Discussions with, and training of, parents (as appropriate) regarding future placements and other matters related to the child's transition;
    2. Procedures to prepare the child for changes in service delivery, including steps to help the child adjust to, and function in, a new setting;
    3. Confirmation that child find information about the child has been transmitted by the Department to the LEA or other relevant agency including:
      1. Listing the same date in Cornerstone PA34 for a child referred more than 45 days before his/her third birthday or
      2. If the child has been referred fewer than 45 days before his/her third birthday, and parental consent was received, list the date the service coordinator sent the Early Intervention to Early Childhood Tracking form to the LEA.
    4. Confirmation that additional information needed by the LEA to ensure continuity of services from the Part C program to the Part B program has been sent to the LEA, listing the same date in Cornerstone that the referral packet was sent. 
    5. Identification of transition services and other activities that the IFSP team determines are necessary to support the transition of the child.

13.4 Transition Planning Conference

  • 13.4.1 With the consent of the family, a transition planning conference is convened for all toddlers that may be eligible for preschool services under Part B not fewer than 90 days and, at the discretion of all parties, not more than 9 months before the child's third birthday to discuss any services the toddler may receive under Part B.
  • 13.4.2 If the child is not potentially eligible for preschool services under Part B or if the family declined transition to preschool services under Part B, the service coordinator shall, with written parental consent, make reasonable efforts to convene a conference with the appropriate parties to discuss appropriate services that the toddler may receive.
  • 13.4.3 The transition planning conference and the IFSP team meeting to develop the Transition Plan may be combined into one meeting. If held within 120 days of the toddler's third birthday, the meeting can also be used to discuss and document progress towards IFSP functional outcomes and EI Levels of Development/Child Outcomes.
  • 13.4.4 At the transition planning conference, ensure the following activities occur:
    • Develop or revise the transition plan (i.e. transition outcome(s)) in the IFSP, including identifying appropriate steps and services
    • Provide parents with information about preschool services under Part B including:
      • A description of Part B eligibility definitions;
      • State timelines and processes for consenting to an evaluation and conducting eligibility determinations under Part B; and
      • The availability of special education and related services
    • Record the meeting in Cornerstone Case Notes as well as complete the necessary fields on the PA34.
    • The LEA has an obligation under the law to participate in transition planning conferences. Document in case notes all attempts to include the LEA in the transition planning conference. Whether or not the LEA participates, the conference must occur.

13.5 Requirements for the IFSP team meeting to develop the Transition Plan & Requirements for the transition planning conference

  • 13.5.1 The IFSP team meeting to develop the transition plan and the transition planning conference must be held in settings and at times that are convenient for the family and in the native language of the family or other mode of communication used by the family, unless it is clearly not feasible to do so.
  • 13.5.2 Meeting arrangements must be made and written notice provided to the family and other participants early enough before the meeting date to ensure that they will be able to attend.
  • 13.5.3 The contents of the IFSP must be fully explained to the parents and informed written consent obtained prior to the provision of the EI services described in the IFSP. Each EI service must be provided as soon as possible after the parent provides consent for that service.
  • 13.5.4 The IFSP team meeting to develop the transition plan must include the following participants: the parent or parents of the child, other family members as requested by the parent if feasible to do so, an advocate or person outside the family if the family requests that person participates, the service coordinator, persons directly involved in conducting evaluations and assessments, and persons who will be providing EI services to the child or family. If a person or persons directly involved in conducting evaluations and assessments is unable to attend a meeting, arrangements must be made for the person's involvement through other means, including one of the following: participating in a telephone conference or have a knowledgeable equally qualified provider attend the meeting.
  • 13.5.5 In addition to the LEA, the transition planning conference must include the following participants: the parent or parents of the child, other family members as requested by the parent if feasible to do so, an advocate or person outside the family if the family requests that person participates, the service coordinator, a person or persons directly involved in conducting evaluations and assessments, and as appropriate, persons who will be providing EI services to the child or family. If a person or persons directly involved in conducting evaluations and assessments is unable to attend a meeting, arrangements must be made for the person's involvement through other means, including one of the following: participating in a telephone conference or making pertinent records available at the meeting (i.e. providing, with parental consent, the most recent evaluation(s) and/or assessment(s) of the child, if not already provided in the referral packet). If a person or persons directly involved in conducting evaluations and assessments is unable to attend the transition planning conference, attempts to secure his/her attendance should be documented in case notes.

13.6 CFC Transition Activities

  • 13.6.1 If the Early Intervention to Early Childhood Tracking form has not already been completed and sent to the LEA with the referral packet, complete the CFC portion of the tracking form, make a copy of the form to give to the CFC Program Manager for tracking purposes and give the completed from to the LEA.
  • 13.6.2 Upon receipt of the Early Intervention to Early Childhood Tracking form from the LEA, enter the information form into the Cornerstone PA34 and file a copy in the child's permanent record.
  • 13.6.3 If the form is not received from the LEA within the 20 days after the child's third birthday, a telephone call will be made by the CFC to the LEA representative to determine the status of the form.
  • 13.6.4 On the child's third birthday, or as soon after as possible, ensure all appropriate case closure activities as outlined in Chapter 14 are completed.