Improving Systems, Practices, and Outcomes

Read the latest on COVID-19 and Tele-Intervention and Distance Learning, and review recent webinars on these topics!

Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP)

Topic Editor: Anne Lucas

Developing High-Quality, Functional IFSP Outcomes and IEP Goals Training Package

This training package was developed in response to the need expressed from state and local providers to have specific information and resources about developing Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) outcomes and Individualized Education Plan (IEP) goals.

Get Started

Video courtesy Connecticut Birth to Three

Planning and Implementing Family-Centered Services in Natural Environments

Although programs have different procedures, there are key steps in the IFSP process. This IFSP Process Chart shows a chart of a typical flow of steps and responsibilities and indicates the activities that must be completed within 45 days, from referral to the IFSP meeting. For convenience, the chart uses the term "service coordinator" as the person likely to be coordinating the process. More accurately, it should say "service coordinator or other service provider" since states and programs may have different team members assigned to such duties. Different roles may have different names as well, such as intake coordinator, family guide, primary service provider, etc. The chart can be adapted to better fit a given state or program.

Resources for Writing Good IFSP Outcomes

Writing functional outcomes that reflect both the family's interests and priorities and professional information from assessments is an important IFSP team activity. Outcomes are identified and written before the discussion of the services, supports and strategies that will be used to achieve them. Outcomes should describe the context (family routines or activities which will provide the opportunity to work on them) and the "end point" (the measurable or observable skills and behaviors that mark successful completion.)

Using the Information Gathered to Develop the IFSP

Many types of information about the child and his/her family are gathered during a high quality assessment. The IFSP team (including family members) uses the information as the basis for team decisions about priorities, outcomes, who will work on each outcome, and the strategies, supports and services necessary to achieve outcomes. The link provides resources for using information to develop the IFSP.

State Examples of IFSP Forms and Guidance for Completion

Nevada and Maine have guidance materials for steps and procedures through the IFSP process, describing the key principles of providing early intervention services (including teaming, gathering information from families) and how these principles are incorporated in practice.

Service Coordination Training Resources

This page presents a compilation of states' on-line courses or modules that are part of a credentialing or qualification process for service coordinators and other early intervention providers. Additionally, there is a collection of on-line training materials that states are using in early intervention programs to provide inservice supports for EI providers.

Relationship of Quality Practices to Child and Family Outcome Measurement Results

This document will assist states in identifying ways to improve results for children and families participating in Part C early intervention services through implementation of quality practices. Key practices were selected from the Agreed Upon Practices for Providing Early Intervention Services in Natural Environments as well as the Personnel Standards for Early Education and Early Intervention: Guidelines for Licensure in Early Childhood Special Education (DEC Recommended Practices). Although all quality practices identified in these two documents potentially impact child and family outcomes, only key quality practices that either have the most direct impact on the specific outcomes or have a lesser, yet still direct impact on specific outcomes are included. The appendices of the document include various ways in which the table may be used.