Tuesday, February 7, 2012 | 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Meeting Location: DHS-DRS Office Building, Suter Conference Room - 3rd Floor; 400 W. Lawrence, Springfield
Conference Telephone: 888-808-6929 | Passcode: 4763919
Roll Call of Attendees
Kristine Smith, Chairperson
Review of Full Task Force Meeting
Kris indicated that at the Full Task Force meeting, she was asked to develop a one page summary of the activities of the committee and recommendations for consideration. Kris submitted to Ryan Croke, Governor’s office.
- Ray Campbell expressed an interest the area of outcome measures for Blind and Visually impaired students.
- Some individuals in the larger task force felt the need to take time in making good recommendations. If any Legislative member wants to develop legislation, there is always an opportunity to amend or move forward. The focus should be on what the final recommendations should be and not the concern of being pushed into doing something that hasn’t been thoroughly thought through.
- The group felt it was a good discussion but not sure that any final recommendations had been proposed.
Updated Information Received
Jane Breen shared information she gathered from the following:
- Texas School for the Blind
- Maryland School for the Blind
- Arizona School for the Blind/Deaf - Tucson Campus
- Florida School for the Blind and Florida School for the Deaf
The document provided a brief overview of each school area related to:
- School funding and governance
- Programming - services
Jane continued to stress the importance of having a statewide Registry to identify those individuals who may need services in order to plan for the schools becoming a statewide resource. This may assist in determining access to funding. Both Arizona and Maryland have registries. Marybeth Lauderdale indicated that students now are either referred through the Parent Referral process or through the IEP process.
Randy Shearburn expressed the need for the Governance committee to make a decision on the best “home” for the schools in order for the Budget Subcommittee to move forward.
Ray Campbell talked about a link from Gallaudet Research Institute that summarizes information on deaf students in each state. Follow the link, and then click on “Illinois” and the summary will come up in a PDF document.
The link is: http://research.gallaudet.edu/Demographics/States/2010/.
Arizona has developed a fee schedule related to their Outreach activities. A recommendation was made for the Budget Subcommittee to look at the feasibility of an Outreach fee schedule for the schools
If the schools become a Statewide Resource, the Budget committee should also look at the feasibility of receiving or partnering with entities like the Illinois Material Center.
Need for Legislation: The recommendation was that if the schools moved within DHS that there was a further need for legislation to designate and recognize the schools as being educational entities and to be treated as such.
The committee is looking at two primary models:
- ISD/ISVI remaining in DHS but under a separate division within DHS
- Separate state agency
Further Action Items
- The committee wanted information on the costs of ancillary services that the schools currently receive (i.e. Legal services, Procurement, Labor Relations, Human Resources) Kris Smith indicated she would work on this information.
- MBL was going to send a planning document to the group.
- Kris to contact Elizabeth Gastelum to determine if an actual exemption could be made within a state agency to be considered an educational entity.
- The Budget Subcommittee will need to look at how the school code could be amended to access General State Aid.
- The committee is also interested in looking at Educational Outcomes, how the information is shared. The Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind indicated that they send out a survey on behalf of the Illinois Materials Center. They might be able to add some additional information to that survey that could be used to start a registry.
Agenda Items for the Next Meeting
- Call-in Number
- Summary of "To Do" items
- Recommendations to be sent to Budget Subcommittee