The Connections Program is made up of four pillars and was developed through the Regional Office of Education #9 to offer extensive support and service coordination to school districts and families. The goals are to prevent chronic absenteeism, better support families, enhance social skills, improve mental health and increase academic performances and graduation rates. 

The four pillars are services for: Truancy, High School Equivalency (HSE/GED), Mental Health and Homelessness.

Truancy / Attendance

Champaign-Ford Regional Office of Education #9 and the READY Program have collaborated to improve student attendance and engage families in the academic and attendance process. The systemic and restorative program offers both truancy intervention services through the Attendance Improvement Program for truants and chronic truants in K-10th grade and an optional education alternative, Re-Start Program, for potential dropouts in 10th and 11th grades. The READY Program has an Attendance Improvement Specialist on staff that works with ROE #9 to assist with efforts of improving student & family engagement and overall attendance. 

GED Re-Start Program / High School Equivalency (HSE)

Traditional schooling does not work for every child. The GED Re-Start program is offered by the ROE #9 and is designed for students in need of further support and assistance. The Re-Start Program provides GED/HSE coursework, career planning and work experience for potential dropouts.

All levels of support include the following components: monitoring data, engaging families and students, recognizing improved attendance, providing personalized outreach and removing barriers.

The ROE will cover the educational expenses. However, parents are responsible for covering the cost of the initial $6.00 GED practice test and for transporting their child to and from school as needed to complete their goals within their Individual Optional Education Plan. The GED Re-Start program is held at the READY Program located at 45 E. University Avenue in Champaign, IL.

To qualify, students must meet the following criteria:

- Champaign-Ford County Student 

- 16 to 18 years old

- Complete TABE Test (at least 8th grade reading level)

- Truant

- Behind on Credits

- Have Transportation Option to/from school (provided by guardian or district)

For further questions, please contact the ROE #9 Connections Program Coordinator, Kim Nix at knix@roe9.org.