Dear New Yorker,
I wanted to let you know about a couple of important upcoming hearings here at the City Council: one on early intervention on Wednesday, October 3rd and a second one on ;school bus service on Wednesday, October 10th. (Please see below for additional details.)
All Council meetings are open to the public and anyone who wishes to is more than welcome to attend these hearings.
If you would like to testify, please be sure to register with the sergeant-of-arms at 250 Broadway prior to the start of the hearing. Public testimony will be limited to two minutes per person in order to allow as many people as possible to present their views.
If you can't make it but would still like to weigh in on these important issues, please feel free to email your written remarks to me at firstname.lastname@example.org , and I'll be sure to forward them to the appropriate Committee staff.
Thanks in advance for any input and feedback you provide.
Christine C. Quinn
Updates to NYC's Early Intervention Program
Next Wednesday, October 3rd, at 1 p.m. in the 14th Floor Committee Room at 250 Broadway in Lower Manhattan, the Council's Committee on Mental Health, Mental Retardation, Alcoholism, Drug Abuse, and Disability Services, chaired by Council Member G. Oliver Koppell, will be holding a public hearing on the City's Early Intervention Program.
Early Intervention is a comprehensive interagency program administered by the NYC Department of Health & Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) through contracts with community-based providers citywide that provides evaluation, social development therapy, and other critical services to infants and children suspected of having or at risk for developmental delays.
In Fiscal Year 2012, DOHMH announced that it was shifting its approach toward service authorization by promoting embedded coaching. Under the older service model, therapists provided an array of services in the home during a certain number of visits per week. By contrast, the embedded coaching model has therapists train parents to provide services so that they are incorporated in the child's day throughout the entire week. This new service model, which was scheduled to begin on July 1, 2011, will result in longer but less frequent visits by therapists.
At our October 3rd hearing, the Committee will be joined by officials from DOHMH, parents and advocates to explore whether this shift in approach will be beneficial for families.
School Bus Service in NYC: Is DOE Meeting the Need?
In response to the many reports that we have heard about students being subjected to unacceptably long rides or no bus rides at all, the Council's Education Committee, chaired by Council Member Robert Jackson, will be holding a public oversight hearing on school bus service in New York City on Wednesday, October 10th.
The hearing is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. in the 16th Floor Committee Room at 250 Broadway (again, in Lower Manhattan).
Busing children to and from school is a basic responsibility, and the least we can do for parents is to transport children safely and efficiently.
The Committee will be joined by education officials, parents and advocates to discuss what can be done to ensure that we are meeting the need for safe and reliable transportation to and from school.