Developmental Screening

The Collaboration works to ensure that all children birth to five receive periodic developmental screenings and that all children who need assessment and services access them.

The Collaboration provides support to pediatric and family practice physicians and early childhood education and child care professionals to conduct developmental screenings of all children in their care. The Collaboration provides training and technical assistance to conduct the Ages and Stages Questionnaire, Third Edition (ASQ-3) and Ages and Stages Questionnaire: Social-Emotional (ASQ:SE) developmental screenings, at least twice per year, or as indicated by Parents as Teachers (PAT) standards or Illinois Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (ICAAP) recommendations. This screening is completed by parents in the ASQ Online database system, enables a quick scoring for providers, and provides an electronic record of children’s development.

Click here to view upcoming dates of developmental screenings for Oak Park and River Forest residents age 3-5.

Developmental Screening Project


received developmental screenings this year

Recent Accomplishments

1,411 preschool age children received hearing or vision screening in 2016-17.

1,726 children received the Ages and Stages Questionnaire (ASQ-3) for social-emotional screening in 2016-17. Collaboration staff developed a communication procedure that enables parents to grant permission to child care and preschool providers, physicians and developmental therapists to communicate with each other about a child’s delays and the work they are doing to support that child. This helps the different people working with a child to work as a team to support the child’s optimal development.

1,806 children received a developmental screening to assess all domains of development thanks to the engagement of 17 child care centers and preschools, 9 family child care providers, one social service agency, and three medical practices.

The Collaboration’s Developmental Screening Coordinator provided technical support to participating sites to support successful program implementation. These sites included 30 early childhood care and education and medical provider sites.
The Collaboration continues to work closely with Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education staff in District 97 to support the successful transition of children between the programs, to maximize screening efforts through the Child Find process and to identify ways to obtain information about what happens with every referral to their programs. This information will be utilized to better understand the referral, assessment and program placement process and ensure children are not slipping through the cracks.
The Physicians' Breakfast Meetings are held twice a year, in April and October. Recent topics include bullying behaviors in young children, partnering with early learning programs to address challenging behaviors, helping doctors and families navigate support services for children ages 3-5, and gender identity in early childhood.

Physicians' Breakfast Newsletters and Presentations are available here.
The 2017-2018 Developmental Referral and Services Directory (PDF) was published and distributed to physicians, health care professionals, and a wide variety of early childhood service providers.

Developmental Milestones Booklet: Watch and Help Me Grow

This colorful booklet describes developmental milestones children are likely to meet at different stages of their lives. The 16-page booklet, broken down by age brackets, explains what a child can do, how a parent can help and when a parent should speak with a doctor. Each child develops on his/her own timeline and not all children meet each milestone at the same time. Some children will gain several new motor skills without developing new language skills or vice versa. This is typical as long as the child begins to master new skills in the other areas within a month or two.

This publication is made possible through a generous grant from CommunityWorks of the Oak Park River Forest Community Foundation and support from the Rotary Club of Oak Park River Forest.

If you would like multiple copies of Watch and Help Me Grow, please contact the Collaboration.

View and download Watch and Help Me Grow.

Developmental Referral and Services Directory

The Developmental Referral and Services Directory (PDF) provides information to health care providers referring children to Early Intervention and Early Childhood Special Education for evaluations. The Directory describes the referral processes for both systems and contains listings for Child Family Connection Offices, school districts and developmental services. The Directory was developed through a CATCH grant awarded by the American Academy of Pediatrics to Dr. Rebacca Barbato to develop a cohesive referral and follow-up process for physicians to use when they believe a child may have developmental delays and need additional evaluations and or services.

View and download the Developmental Referral and Services Directory (PDF).

Developmental Screening Project Participants

Click here to view the complete list of child care centers, preschools and family child care providers that participate in the Collaboration's Developmental Screening Program.

In addition, these physicians and community partners are developmental screening partners:

Medical Practices
Lake Street Family Physicians
Oak Park Pediatrics
Elmhurst Clinic, Oak Park Office

Community Service Programs
Easter Seals Partnering with Parents
Wonder Works Children’s Museum
River Forest Public Library

The Physicians Network

Working with Doctors Rebecca Barbato, Rebecca Turk and Karen Walker, the Collaboration launched the Physicians Network in July 2008 to promote a stronger connection between the early childhood community and health practitioners and to increase their awareness of early childhood developmental issues and services. Dr. Barbato is a pediatrician in practice at Loyola Center for Health at North Riverside and is assistant professor in Pediatrics at Loyola University in Chicago – Stritch School of Medicine. Dr. Turk is a pediatrician at Pedios Ltd. in Oak Park. Dr. Walker practices pediatrics at Pediagroup in Oak Park and at The Children's Clinic sponsored by the Oak Park/River Forest Infant Welfare Society. She serves on the Executive Committee of Illinois Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Read the Physicians Network Newsletters and view past presentations in our Resource Library.

The Physicians Network Breakfast Meetings

The Physicians Network sponsors two breakfast seminars each year focusing on key issues in children's healthy development. Recent topics have included roots of childhood obesity, technology and young children, cyberbullying, breastfeeding support, and partnering between child care and pediatricians to address behavioral challenges. When feasible, physicians receive Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits for attending these meetings.

Hearing and Vision Screening

The Collaboration has been providing Hearing and Vision Screening to children enrolled in preschools and child care centers in Oak Park since 2009. In 2013, the Collaboration expanded this service to children enrolled in early learning and care programs in River Forest and in 2014 the program was expanded to include children in family child care homes and to the community at-large. The State of Illinois mandates that all preschools and licensed child care centers provide annual vision and hearing screenings. Because of the critical importance of these screenings, the Collaboration decided to undertake this program despite inadequate support from the State of Illinois.

Hearing and Vision Screening is a critical step in supporting children’s development. It is estimated that 10-15% of all preschoolers may have some form of vision problem. While some pediatricians perform vision screenings as part of the well-child visit, others do not. Early identification of hearing loss may be of greater significance. At any given time, 15% of preschool-age children are believed to suffer from short-term hearing impairment, often due to chronic ear infections. Approximately 3% suffer from hearing loss.

This project is sponsored in part by the Rotary Club of Oak Park - River Forest.

Developmental Screening Resources

The Collaboration has compiled a list of websites of interest to those who conduct developmental screenings. It includes many forms and tools to download.

Visit Resources for Health Care Professionals.