An Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) is a document that is developed with the parents’ participation and input. Outcomes (goals) that are functional and age appropriate are developed and the supports/services that are necessary to assist the child and family in meeting these outcomes are included. This document tells the family the frequency and intensity of the supports. The caregiver for the child should always be present when services and supports are being provided under Early Intervention. The early intervention provider’s role is to provide the caregiver with the abilities to assist the child in achieving the IFSP outcomes.
Service and supports provided under Early Intervention are designed to assist the child and family achieve the IFSP outcomes. Our services are NOT meant to replace services that are similar but are medical in nature. Please take a moment to read, “A Vital Message about Alabama’s Early Intervention System.” In addition to Early Intervention services, you may need to seek other services to meet all of the needs of your child. EI providers are all required to meet the approved ICC Personnel Standards.
Alabama’s Early Intervention System is required to assist eligible families in the process of transitioning their children at age 3 from Early Intervention services and supports and informing these families about potential placement options for their children at age 3.
Transition planning for toddlers usually begins with the family and service coordinator writing a plan at or just before 27 months of age or later if a child became eligible after 27 months. A service coordinator will notify a local education agency (LEA) that a child receiving early intervention services may be eligible for pre-school services unless a family chooses in writing to “opt-out” of sending basic information. With family agreement, a meeting with the LEA will be scheduled (convened) to discuss details of public pre-school services. A family is never required to accept. For more information, you may want to read "Opting Out of LEA Notification Policy.”
A written Transition Plan should include goals and procedures that will support families during this time but should include discussion about local placement options and what transition will mean to a particular family. Many families choose their LEA to determine their child’s eligibility for public pre-school services while other families choose to home school or place in a different community setting (e.g. child care, local private school). Some families ask for extended time to decide, and in these cases, will be provided contact information for the LEA to make their own parent referral.
Ultimately, it is a family’s determination of their child’s ideal placement at age 3 that counts. Decisions are primarily based on personal preference and community placements available for all 3-year-olds.
A written Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) should include the discussion of:
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