Your Individualized Family Service Plan

The Individualized Family Service Plan, or IFSP, is a written plan that will be specially designed for you, your child, and your family that outlines and explains the EI services your child and family will receive. If the MDE shows that your child is eligible for the EIP, your ISC will set up an IFSP meeting to sit down and write your IFSP. The IFSP is a very important document and you are an important member of the team that develops it. If you need extra time to think about the plan, ask for it. You may want to discuss the plan with other family members or review it to make sure it meets the needs of your child and family. You will be asked to sign your IFSP when the plan is finished. When you sign the IFSP, you show that you were at the IFSP meeting and that you agree to the services in the plan. You are also giving your consent to start EI services.

If you and the IFSP team do not agree on the IFSP you do not have to sign the IFSP. You can give your written consent to start the services that you agree with, and exercise your due process rights to resolve the disagreement.

Your ISC will tell you about what happens at the IFSP meeting and help you prepare. Some important things you need to know about your IFSP meeting include:

  • The IFSP meeting must be held at a time and place that is good for you and your family;
  • You, your ISC, the Early Intervention Official (EIO) in your county, and evaluation team, or selected member of the team must take part in the meeting;
  • You can invite others to attend the IFSP meeting, such as family, friends, your babysitter, or child care providers;
  • Your ISC can invite others to take part in the meeting, with your consent;
  • You can ask an advocate to take part in the meeting;
  • You, your ISC, your child's evaluators, and your EIO will review the information that has been collected about your child's development and will decide together how the EIP will help your child and family;
  • Your family's resources, priorities and concerns related to your child's development will be discussed;
  • You will help to identify outcomes (improvements you would like to see in your child's develop- ment) for your child and family;
  • Strategies, activities, and services that will lead to the outcomes you hope to reach will be developed and written on the plan;
  • Your need for respite services will be discussed, as appropriate, and determined based on the individual needs of your child and family. Respite services can be used for temporary relief of caregiving responsibilities that may be necessary for your child. Respite may be provided in the home or another appropriate location;
  • To include a service in your IFSP, you and all members of the IFSP team must agree to the service; and
  • You may accept or decline any EI service without jeopardizing your child's right to receive any of the other EI services identified in the IFSP.

Your family's IFSP will include the following information:

  • A statement of your child's current level of functioning;
  • With your permission, a statement of your family's resources, priorities, and concerns related to your child's development;
  • A statement of the major outcomes expected from EI services. IFSP outcomes must be meaningful and based on your child and family's needs and priorities;
  • A statement of the EI services, including transportation, needed to meet your child's and family's needs;
  • A plan for when your child is in day care, and when needed, for EI service providers to train the day care staff to meet the needs of your child;
  • A physician's, physician's assistant's or nurse practitioner's order or prescription for EI services that require an order/prescription from specific medical professionals;
  • A statement about other services, including medical services that are needed by your child and family that are not provided or paid for by the EIP;
  • The dates that services are expected to begin as soon as possible after the IFSP meeting, once you have signed the plan and given your permission;
  • The name of the ongoing service coordinator who will help you to put the plan into action;
  • The steps to help your child and family change to other services, including preschool special education services. In the EIP, this is called transition planning; and
  • A statement of the natural environments where EI services will be provided. "Natural environment" means settings where infants and toddlers are typically found in the community. This can be your home or another community location, such as day care or at a playground.

Services should begin as soon as possible after you have given your consent for the EI services listed in the IFSP. Your EIO must convene a meeting at least annually to evaluate and, as necessary, revise the IFSP for your child and family. The EIO is also responsible for making sure the IFSP is reviewed every six months or more frequently if you request a review.