Improving Systems, Practices and Outcomes

Engaging Families and Creating Trusting Partnerships to Improve Child and Family Outcomes March - June 2017

Series Overview

Photograph: Ann and Rud Turnbull

The ECTA Center is partnering with the DaSy Center, Ann and Rud Turnbull, and invited guests to facilitate an interactive 4-part web broadcast series aimed at supporting early intervention (EI) and early childhood special education (ECSE) systems leaders with building capacity in personnel and families to develop trusting partnerships. These partnerships in a child’s early years lay the foundation for achieving the long-term intended outcomes for children/students with developmental delays and disabilities articulated in the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Throughout the series, we will host discussions of the role that data play in strengthening family-professional partnerships. Suggestions and resources for designing personnel and family development activities to support partnerships will also be shared.

Target Audience

This series is unique in addressing the knowledge-building and technical assistance needs of both practitioners and families. The webinars are intended for:

  • EI/ECSE state staff (e.g., Part C and 619 Coordinators, PD/TA staff)
  • EI/ECSE family leaders
  • Parent center/organization staff
  • IDEA State Interagency Coordinating Council/State Advisory Panel representatives; and
  • Other early childhood leaders and stakeholders committed to strengthening family-professional collaboration in programs that serve young children with developmental delays and disabilities, and their families.

Participants are encouraged to gather with others to watch the live broadcsts of these events! The presenters will offer suggestions for having post-session group discussions.

Session 1 Getting to the Bottom Line of Family Engagement Wednesday, March 29, 2017, 3-4 PM EDT

In the first session, presenters discuss the meaning of family engagement by sharing the results of a synthesis of key policies, frameworks, and the DEC Recommended Practices on family engagement, including related principles of IDEA. They address the essential role of systems supports for ensuring local implementation of effective family engagement practices.

Session 1: Resources

Session 2 Enhancing Trusting Partnerships at the Systems and Practice Levels: Reciprocal Opportunities for Professionals and Families Thursday, April 20, 2017, 3-4 PM EDT

In the second session, the presenters focus on the nature of trusting partnerships among professionals and families. They describe six research-based partnership principles, and emphasize the practices that professionals and families should demonstrate when implementing the principles. Tools for measuring partnerships and family engagement are also discussed.

Guest presenters include staff from the National Center on Parent, Family, and Community Engagement and early childhood partners from Iowa discussing some of their program improvement efforts.

Session 2: Resources

Session 3 Infusing Partnership Principles and Practices into Family Engagement Activities Wednesday, May 24, 2017, 3-4 PM EDT

In Session 3, the presenters will highlight quality practices that enable practitioners and families to develop and strengthen trusting partnerships. Guests from the field will speak to their experiences with implementing the practices. Resources for designing related personnel and family development activities will be shared.

Sign up now! for session log-in information

Subsequent webinars will be held on a monthly basis through June 2017. Stay tuned for specific dates and details!

in collaboration with:

Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center

  • CB 8040
  • Chapel Hill, NC 27599-8040
  • phone: 919.962.2001
  • fax: 919.966.7463
  • email:

The ECTA Center is a program of the FPG Child Development Institute of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, funded through cooperative agreement number H326P120002 from the Office of Special Education Programs, U.S. Department of Education. Opinions expressed herein do not necessarily represent the Department of Education's position or policy.

  • FPG Child Development Institute
  • OSEP's TA&D Network:IDEAs that Work