Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago provides this guidance to help parents decide if their transplanted child or their siblings should return to school during the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes recommendations on minimum requirements to prevent infection and how to assess your child and family’s risk.
Hands & Voices provides a variety of resources specific to children who are deaf/hard of hearing plus – the combination of being deaf or hard of hearing and having additional medical complexities or other needs.
Information includes the “Connecting Families of Children who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing Plus (DHH Plus) with Resources and Support” guide, an Educational Plan Checklist for D/HH-Plus Students and presentations, articles and other guides for families of children who are D/HH plus.
Inclusion is the law, but it takes more than legal compliance to create an environment where all children feel included and valued. Educating children about disability and inclusion can protect vulnerable students from bullying and encourage empathy and kindness among students.
Baylor University’s “How to Teach Children About Disabilities and Inclusion” outlines age-appropriate ways to teach children about disabilities and strategies for fostering empathy and understanding in school or any social environment.
Understood.org gives parents step-by-step instructions for how to create an individualized education program (IEP) binder that sorts their child’s evaluation reports, IEP, report cards and other paperwork. The site includes an IEP binder checklist, school contact sheet, parent-school communication log and IEP goal tracker that parents can download and print.
The Illinois Chapter of the Association of Education of Young Children (ILAEYC or Illinois AEYC) works to enrich the quality of care and education of the young child by:
- Increasing communication among parents, caregivers and professionals involved in the care and education of young children
- Providing in-service training for the early childhood community
- Hosting opportunities for community learning
ILAEYC has chapters and volunteers throughout the state.
Illinois Cares for Kids provides parents, caregivers, teachers and childcare providers a place to find information on statewide programs related to early learning and development, child care and family well-being in English and Spanish. The website includes information about:
- Child development and education for kids of all ages
- Healthcare coverage and emotional well-being
- Home visiting programs
- Child care subsidy programs
- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
- Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF)
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- “Ready for K” (Ready4K), a statewide text messaging platform offering fun facts and tips on children’s learning and development in multiple languages
The Illinois Community College Initiative provides academic and vocational training programs for eligible students with disabilities at in-state public community colleges and approved community colleges bordering the state. People with disabilities who are determined eligible for the Illinois Department of Human Services’ Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) vocational rehabilitation program may complete community college coursework leading to an associate’s degree or to a degree, certificate, or other industry-recognized credential or certificate.
DRS will help students with:
- The cost of tuition, fees, books and supplies
- Transportation costs
- Other eligible costs
See the Illinois Community College Initiative flyer for more details. To get started, contact your local DRS office using the locator tool or call (877) 581-3690. TTY and relay callers can dial 711.
The Illinois Early Learning Project website is a source of evidence-based, reliable information on early care and education for parents, caregivers and teachers of young children in the state of Illinois.
INEP are part of University of Illinois Extension and provide nutrition education to individuals and families in communities around the state of Illinois. Through nutrition and cooking classes, interactive displays, and online resources, the program provides knowledge and teaches the skills necessary to help clients make healthier meals, spend their food budgets effectively and make healthy living a natural part of their day. You can visit their website to find out if a program is offered in your county.
Effective July 1, 2020, the Seizure Smart School Act requires all Illinois school personnel to be trained in seizure first aid. It also requires the development of a Seizure Action Plan for students with epilepsy on how to best care for students with the disorder. A student’s parents or guardians will share their healthcare provider’s instructions on managing the student’s epilepsy and include a copy of any prescriptions and how and when to administer those medicines.
The Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Chicago provides resources and frequently asked questions about the law and what it means for families and schools.