The first step is to contact your Child and Family Connections (CFC) office to determine whether your child is eligible for services under the Illinois Early Intervention Program. A physician or a child care professional may have already recommended that you contact the Illinois Early Intervention Program.
To be eligible, your child:
- Must be 0, 1, or 2 years old,
- Have an identifiable developmental delay of 30% or more,
Have a physician’s diagnosis of a physical or mental condition that causes a developmental delay,
Be at risk of substantial developmental delay because of certain risk factors.
If you believe your child may be eligible for Illinois Early Intervention Program services...
- Call your local Child and Family Connections (CFC) office to arrange for an initial “intake” visit by a service coordinator at your home. He or she will schedule free evaluations of your child’s development. After your child is determined to be eligible, the service coordinator will serve as your personal contact through the entire time your child receives Illinois Early Intervention Program services.
If your child is determined to be ineligible for Illinois Early Intervention Program services...
- Your service coordinator will recommend alternative providers or resources.
Your Family Rights
If your child is determined to be eligible for the Illinois Early Intervention Program, your family rights include:
- An evaluation of your child by a professional team completed within 45 days of referral, as well as ongoing monitoring of your child.
- An Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) written within 45 days of referral. The IFSP lists child and family strengths, needs, resources, priorities, and concerns. It alsoidentifies services to be provided to your child. The IFSP must be reviewed at least once every six months and re-evaluated annually.
- Privacy and consent. No information about your child and family will be shared without your written consent. In addition, you will have the opportunity to consent to all services provided through the program.
- Refusal of services. You may refuse any service at any time without jeopardizing other services or without losing the right to re-enter the Illinois Early Intervention Program before your child is age 3.
- Prior notice of changes to the date, time, or location of an IFSP meeting or to proposed changes to the IFSP.
- Record review. You may inspect, review or amend your records at any time or by request. You also may receive copies of your records.
You also have the right to receive information in your native language and in a way that can be understood and the right to disagree, complain, and request mediation. Written complaints and written requests for mediation or impartial administrative resolution should be submitted to the Illinois Department of Human Services according to the procedures outlined in the following booklet: State of Illinois Infant/Toddler & Family Rights Under IDEA for the Early Intervention System. This booklet also can provide more detail on your rights under the Illinois Early Intervention Program.
Right of refusal
You also have the right to refuse Illinois Early Intervention Program services for now, while keeping the option of returning for services at a later date.