Stop the Historic Underfunding of CIS

Children’s Integrated Services (CIS) maximizes children’s health, development, and learning by providing individualized support to families and specialized childcare programs. Due to inadequate funding over the last 11 years, Vermont is coming up short in meeting its obligation to its youngest learners, particularly those who are entitled to Early Intervention services mandated by Federal law. Children are unable to access early intervention and prevention services with the timeliness and frequency needed for good outcomes. 

The Alliance supports the lead organizations’ efforts to secure an increased investment in CIS, which would ensure continued progress on optimal, healthy child development; family safety and stability; and, young children’s access to quality early care and education.

LEAD ORGANIZATIONS: Vermont Parent Child Center NetworkVermont Family Network, and Winston Prouty Center for Child and Family Development

Talking Points

  • The pandemic has created significant strains on the CIS system, and these will continue as public health impacts are felt in the coming months and years. In the Brattleboro AHS District we have seen a 6% increase in referrals, a 21% increase in clients put onto CIS One Plans, and a 50% reduction in clients lost to follow up, indicating an increase in engagement in services. 
  • The Child Development Division’s own study in 2019 revealed that the current rate of $600 per member per month (PMPM) does not cover the cost of providing services. Based on that study, the inflation adjusted rate to cover actual costs would now be $700 PMPM, requiring a $1.8 million increase to the annual CIS budget to bring it to $13.3 million. This level of funding would be adequate to fully fund services at the pre-pandemic levels. 
  • With the large influx of federal pandemic response funding, we have a unique opportunity to utilize one-time federal funding to make a desperately needed upgrade of CIS’ data collection and reporting system that also fully integrates with CDD’s data system CDDIS. Without a common data system, CIS providers lack the ability to visualize the data, track client progress, and make real time changes to their service plans as needed, and CDD cannot compare and track data across the CIS regions. 

Resources and Advocacy Tools