eNotesJune 9, 2021
Updates from the ECTA Center
Celebration of 50 Years of Technical Assistance Excellence at Frank Porter Graham (FPG) Child Development Institute
Reflecting on the wisdom of the past. Informing our work in the present. Inspiring the field for the future. This theme sums up FPG's half-century of providing expertise to state-level agencies that implement evidence-based practices for young children with disabilities and their families.
The upcoming celebration will feature three 75-minute presentations that take place on subsequent Thursdays, September 30, October 7, and October 14 from 3:00 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. (EDT). Keynotes by national early childhood leaders and panel discussions that feature national and state technical assistance experts will help participants connect the past with the present and inform how we shape the future of technical assistance (TA). Today's TA began with the ground-breaking work that Pascal "Pat" Trohanis started in 1971 and continues to educate, support, and provide services through IDEA. If you have photos and/or other memorabilia to share that gives a historical perspective of TA at FPG, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can include them in our celebration. In the meantime, check for updates about the celebration at the Trohanis TA projects website.
Programs Serving Children with Disabilities: IDEA as a Key Component of a State Early Childhood System
This newly released brief provides information and resources about the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act's (IDEA) two early childhood programs, early intervention services and early childhood special education services. It provides examples of how IDEA state staff and staff from other early care and education programs can work together to build a coordinated state system to improve results for young children with disabilities and families. Links to several helpful resources related to IDEA are also found throughout the brief. The brief was developed by the Preschool Development Grants Birth Through Five Technical Assistance (PDG B-5 TA) Center with support from the ECTA Center.
In Pursuit of Equity in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education
Archived recordings of the In Pursuit of Equity in Early Intervention/Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) series are available for viewing. The five-part series, hosted by the Division of Exceptional Children (DEC) and ECTA, features experts in the field of early childhood special education and early intervention such as Sheresa Boone Blanchard, Ph.D., Jen Newton, Ph.D., Gloria Neal and Rosemarie Allen, Ed.D., who present on ways to disrupt the pervasive inequities of our systems. Topics include troubling notions of "at risk," challenging biases about families in home-based services, suspension and expulsion in early childhood settings, counteracting racism and ableism in early childhood systems, and engaging in systems change in pursuit of equity. Staff can sign up to review the full set of three archived videos. Two upcoming webinars remain in the series.
Registration Open for the National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute 2021 Virtual
Registration is now open for the 2021 National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute with its theme, Forging Equitable Opportunities from Crisis. This year's Institute is again virtual and will be held October 25-28. Dr. Jeanette Betancourt will be this year's keynote. She is Senior Vice President for U.S. Social Impact at Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street. In that role, Dr. Betancourt directs the development and implementation of community and family engagement initiatives making a difference in the lives of vulnerable children and their families. The Inclusion Institute has drawn people from across the country and around the globe to learn about the latest research findings, models, and resources to guide inclusive policy, professional development and practice; to develop collaborative relationships and cross-agency systems to support early childhood inclusion; and to have the opportunity to meet, learn from and problem solve with peers.
Part C Racial Equity Community Formed
In conjunction with the IDEA Infant & Toddler Coordinators Association (ITCA), the Early Childhood Technical Assistance (ECTA) Center has begun a new community for Part C Coordinators that focuses on building capacity that leads to actionable systems change concerning racial inequity. The Part C Racial Equity Community will explore the work of Part C coordinators when addressing racial inequity in early intervention systems and services. Part C coordinators and staff interested in joining the community may contact Denise J. Bennett: email@example.com
News from the Field
Guidance on Use of American Rescue Plan Funds
This FAQ issued by the Department of Education provides Guidance on the Use of American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act Funds. This guidance relates specifically to Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) and Governor's Emergency Education Relief (GEER) funds. ESSER and GEER funds can be used for authorized services under IDEA. See C-5 (begins on page 39), separated by sections for 611, 619, Part C and Part D. An FAQ specific to IDEA is forthcoming, as is additional guidance from the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP).
Our Youngest Learners: Increasing Equity in Early InterventionOur Youngest Learners: Increasing Equity in Early Intervention, developed by The Education Trust identifies the strengths of state approaches and opportunities for increasing equity in providing early intervention services.
Strategies for Building More Equitable Schools When Returning to the Classroom
Strategies for Building More Equitable Schools When Returning to the Classroom developed by ChildTrends focuses on the country's opportunity to transform its educational approach when returning to school to better meet the needs of all students, particularly students of color. When returning to school, educators are encouraged to: focus on the whole child; incorporate parent voices into school decision making; involve varied stakeholders in planning; examine and dismantle racist and inequitable practices; and develop processes for accountability.
Association of University Centers on Disabilities Hires New Act Early Ambassadors
Four new Act Early Ambassadors are available to support their respective states' work toward improving early identification of developmental delays and disabilities, including autism. The Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced the new Act Early Ambassadors for Delaware, Louisiana, New Hampshire, and Rhode Island.
ED Games Expo
The ED Games Expo is an annual event that showcases game-changing innovations in education technology (EdTech) developed through more than 40 programs at the Department of Education and across government. Held during the first week in June, the Expo offers educators and students access to more than 160 education learning games and technologies at no cost through the entire month of June. The ECTA video series, Preschool During the Pandemic, is featured among on the Expo's YouTube playlist.