What Else Should Parents Know About the Program?
The New York State Early Intervention Program is part of the national Early Intervention Program created by Congress in 1986 under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). IDEA is the federal law that also gives all children and youth ages 3 to 21 years the right to a free, appropriate public education.
In 1992, the New York State Legislature created the State Early Intervention Program in Article 25 of the Public Health Law. The New York State Public Health Law gives all eligible children under three years of age the right to receive early intervention services in their Individualized Family Service Plans. The Public Health Law also ensures that:
- New York State's Early Intervention Program meets all the federal standards for early intervention programs.
- Parents have due process rights that apply to their child's early intervention services.
What are the Department of Health's responsibilities?
Some of the main responsibilities of the Department of Health, as lead agency, include:
- Administering and monitoring the statewide Early Intervention Program.
- Administering the statewide child find and public awareness system.
- Providing training and technical assistance to everyone involved in the Early Intervention Program.
- Keeping an updated statewide central directory of early intervention services, resources, and experts.
- Implementing a system of payments for early intervention services.
- Safeguarding parent rights under the Early Intervention Program.
What is the Early Intervention Coordinating Council?
The Early Intervention Coordinating Council (EICC) is an advisory council appointed by the governor to provide advice and assistance about the Early Intervention Program to the Department of Health. The EICC has 27 members, including:
- Five parents of children up to 13 years old with disabilities.
- Five providers of early intervention services.
- Two Early Intervention Officials.
- Two members of the Legislature.
- Commissioners, or their representatives, of the following state agencies: Department of Health, State Education Department, Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, Office of Mental Health, and, the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services.
- The superintendent of insurance.
- One person involved in the training of early intervention professionals.
- Six persons appointed by the governor.
Twelve of these members, including four parents , are recommended to the governor by the leaders of the New York State Senate and Assembly.
The Early Intervention Coordinating Council is a very important part of the Early Intervention Program. All meetings of the EICC are open to the public. The EICC meets at least four times a year. For more information about the Early Intervention Coordinating Council, contact the New York State Department of Health, Bureau of Early Intervention, at (518) 473-7016.
What is a Local Early Intervention Coordinating Council?
Your county has a Local Early Intervention Coordinating Council (LEICC) made up of parents and professionals. The LEICC advises the Early Intervention Official about local early intervention issues such as gaps in services. LEICC meetings are a way to help you meet other parents and to learn more about the Early Intervention Program in your area.
Ask your service coordinator, or Early Intervention Official, for more information about your Local Early Intervention Coordinating Council. LEICC meetings are public, open meetings. Ask for the meeting dates, or ask how you can become a member.
We hope this Parent's Guide helps you and your family as you navigate the Early Intervention Program!