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News, Notes and Events

Visit this page often to stay apprised of current news and events. Use our submission form to suggest news or events for inclusion on the Multiple Systems Navigator.



Changes to NYS Procedural Safeguards

Rights for Parents of Children with Disabilities, Ages 3-21

The NYS Education Department revised requirements relating to procedures concerning appeals of impartial hearing officer determinations for students with disabilities to a State Review Officer. The specific changes are highlighted on pages 26 and 27 of the Notice.

The amendment, which became effective January 1, 2017, applies to all appeals in which a Request for Review (formally called a “Petition for Review”) has been served upon the opposing party on or after January 1, 2017.

Questions may be directed to the Office of Special Education, at 518-473-2878 or



NYS Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS) Impact

The NYS Council on Children and Families and grantees in 11 other states have been awarded the Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS) Impact grant. This 5-year federal grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration, Maternal and Child Health Bureau seeks to enhance early child-hood systems building and demonstrate improved outcomes in population-based children’s developmen-tal health and family well-being using a Collaborative Innovation and Improvement Network (CoIIN) approach. The overall 5 year aim of this project is to demonstrate a 25% increase from baseline in age appropriate developmental skills among 3 year old children in selected NYS communities.



Statewide Peer-to-Peer Educational Forums

Eligible Medicaid Enrolliees

New York Association of Psychiatric Rehabilitation Services, Inc. (NYAPRS) and their partners at the Mental Health Empowerment Project and the Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Providers of NYS are very pleased to announce the launch of a new statewide initiative aimed at educating and encouraging eligible Medicaid members to enroll in Health and Recovery Plans and Health Homes and to make use of newly available Home and Community Based Services.

Peer educators are now available to come to program and community settings in your area and to engage in an informal and interactive discussion about the new choices enrollees with more extensive behavioral health conditions can make to raise the bar for what they seek in their lives and from their services.

The project is funded by the Office of Mental Health (OMH) and has been developed with guidance from OMH, the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, the Department of Health and the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

Please use the contact information in the announcement to check about eligibility to receive these benefits or to schedule a forum in your area!

Dates, times and sites of the forums will be regularly announced for your convenience.



Project TEACH

Training Education for the Advancement of Children's Health

Project TEACH provides the following services for all New York primary care physicians (PCPs) serving children and adolescents:

  • Rapid consultation from Child and Adolescent Psychiatrists
    • By phone to PCP
    • In person
  • Education and Training
  • Referral and linkage services



NYS Suicide Prevention Conference

Pillars of Prevention - September 18-19

This conference will feature:

  • Prevention in Health and Behavioral Healthcare Settings
  • Prevention Across the Lifespan in Communities
  • Better Data to Inform Suicide Prevention
Location: Hilton Albany, 40 Lodge Street, Albany, NY
Date: September 18, 2017



2017 NYS Caregiving & Respite Coalition Annual Conference

Understanding and Effectively Engaging Caregivers

Day One - Interactive Caregiver Simulation

What better way to understand caregivers, than to spend a few hours in their shoes. This active simulation allows participants to experience a fraction of the challenges caregivers face, day in and day out. Each participant will be assigned a role, and will have tasks, dilemmas and opportunities to navigate throughout the afternoon. 

Monday Evening - Reception for NYSCRC REST Trainers 

Day Two - Conference Packed with Spectacular Speakers and Topics!

Here are a few of the highlights:

Dr. Larry Force will kick off the day by sharing from his many years of experience in the fields of gerontology and disabilities. He draws from over 30 years as an administrator, clinician and educator.

REST (Respite Education and Support Tools) and the impact of training volunteers. Lois Schaffer from REST will share the data and progress happening across the nation, and Doris Green will share the movement happening across NYS.

Marian Hamilton and Jill Gottlieb - from the Ken Hamilton Caregiver Center in Westchester, ...New York. "Our Center offers a friendly and tranquil atmosphere where caregivers can come for respite or meet with a social worker or caregiver coach for individual support." 

Melanie Funchess -This keynote speaker will make you think and feel! She is the Director of Community Engagement at the Mental Health Association and is a founding member of the Coalition for the Beloved Community.

Robin Miller and Bill Pryzlucki from the Council on Children and Families will present on the robust Multi Systems Navigator. The MSNavigator provides easy access to helpful health, education, human service and disability information on one user-friendly website. It is built for youth, parents, family members and caregivers that rely on support from multiple child and family serving systems.

Before, and throughout, the conference you will be able to visit a variety of vendor tables with local and statewide resources. If you are interested in participating as a sponsoring vendor, please contact Sharon Cackett at for more details. 

Tickets - $25-$45

Location: The Desmond Hotel, 660 Albany Shaker Road, Albany, NY
Date: October 2, 2017
Time: 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.



Strengthening Our Capacity to Help Others

4.5 hours of Continuing Education Credits for LMSWs, LCWs & LMHCs

The cumulative impact of daily exposure to the suffering and trauma of the individuals we work with can take a toll on personal and professional lives. Laura van Dernoot Lipsky, Founder and Director of the Trauma Stewardship Institute, will offer a compelling mix of personal insight and cutting edge research to help individuals gain a deeper understanding of vicarious trauma/ compassion fatigue, and offer tools to help you regain your strength, focus and purpose.

This workshop is FREE of charge and intended for:

  • Behavioral/mental health and other service providers
  • Police, probation, parole and corrections officers and law enforcement
  • Victim service providers and advocates
  • Individuals receiving services
  • Family members
  • Defense lawyers and prosecutors
  • Any individuals working with justice-involved people with behavioral/mental health needs
Location: Hilbert College (Swan Auditorium), 5200 South Park Ave, Hamburg, NY 14075
Date: October 27, 2017
Time: 8:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.



Building Networks of Support for Caregivers

Two-Day Train-the-Trainer - REST Companions - September 7th - 8th

REST, Respite Education and Support Tools, is a nationally-recognized interactive two-day Train-The-Trainer course that prepares those who will train REST Companions™ to provide respite in their own communities.

To register, please fill out a registration form.

Funding for this training is provided by the New York State Office of Aging for all New York residents with an interest in supporting respite.

Registration Fee for non-New York State residents: $595

For more information, contact:

Doris Green, Director, NYS Caregiver & Respite Coalition

Kelly Fitzgerald, REST Training Development Manager

Location: Town Square for Aging, 2710 North Forest Road, Getzville, NY
Date: September 7, 2017
Time: 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.



Assessing and Improving Special Education

A Program Review Tool

This program review tool was developed by the Center on School Turnaround (CST) to assist school districts or individual school leaders in catalyzing conversations about, and reviewing and improving the quality of, their special education program as a key component of school improvement efforts.

The tool consists of three parts: an overview of the program features with examples each at three different levels of quality (i.e., high, acceptable, unacceptable); a template for conducting a special education program review inventory; and a template for developing a quality improvement plan based on results of that inventory.



Disability Playlists - Resources and Tool Kits

Download PDF Playlists to Support Individuals with Disabilities

High-quality service to individuals with disabilities is a critical goal of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) partners and practitioners. You may obtain a wealth of technical assistance resources to help you reach that goal with these ten playlists.




Children's SPA/HCBS Provider Designation Update

New York State remains committed to the Children's Medicaid Redesign. The anticipated timeline for full implementation of the design runs through January 2019, including Voluntary Foster Care Agency (VFCA) transition in January 2019, which is dependent upon the timeframes for acquiring necessary federal approvals for the two submitted State Plan Amendments (SPAs) and the pending submission of the 1115 Waiver. The anticipated implementation dates will need to be modified accordingly based on the timing of approvals and the review of incoming Federal Administration priorities and processes.  Please note that federal approval of the SPAs and the 1115 Waiver continue to be linked, wherein, while federal approvals may occur at varying times, the implementation of the new SPA services and transition to Medicaid managed care will take place concurrently.

Therefore, given the uncertain timeframes, providers interested in applying for SPA/HCBS provider designation to provide the proposed services under the redesign should be aware that the April 1 deadline for applications is being lifted and a new due date will be assigned when the State has more clarity on the likely federal approval timing. The State will continue to provide updates as it receives more information and greater understanding of federal priorities.



New York Health Reform Watch

Stay Informed

The health care landscape is changing rapidly in 2017. As Congress sets out to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, the implications for health care across the country and here in New York State could be profound. 

NYSHealth is pleased to unveil a new resource, New York Health Reform Watch, to keep you informed on a regular basis. It features analyses and resources about health reform efforts and their potential impact on our State. Check out this one-stop shop to keep track of the latest developments at the State and national levels. 

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Developed by the Council on Children and Families and Funded by the Developmental Disabilities Planning Council