eNotesMay 9, 2023
Updates from the ECTA Center
Child Outcomes Summary Knowledge Check (COS-KC)
The Child Outcomes Summary Knowledge Check (COS-KC) is a free, online tool that assesses whether a practitioner has enough knowledge to participate in the COS team process and produce accurate ratings for child outcomes measurement. Practitioner knowledge is an essential part of accurate data; therefore, states can use it to improve the quality of their child outcomes data. The COS-KC:
- Includes 30 multiple choice items.
- Takes about 45 minutes to complete.
- Provides different assessments for practitioners working with infants and toddlers and preschoolers.
- Is open book with links to resources.
- Is untimed. Test-takers can return as needed.
- Is pass-fail and graded as soon as completed.
- Is field-tested nationally for validity.
State agencies interested in learning more about using the COS-KC, see COS-KC: For States. To learn more about the assessment itself and how to take it, see COS-KC: For Practitioners.
International Early Childhood Inclusion Institute, May 16-18
This year's theme for the International Early Childhood Inclusion Institute is Committing to Communities Where Everyone Belongs. It will feature, Dr. Sadia Batool, from the Pennsylvania Early Childhood Family Lead for Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems. Her topic is Under the Sun Everyone Belongs - Reimagining Inclusion Across Settings. Over its 22-year history, the Institute has become one of the premier educational opportunities for people involved in the care and education of young children with disabilities in inclusive settings. National and international attendees to the Institute learn about the latest research findings, models, and resources that guide inclusive policy, professional development, and practice to develop collaborative relationships and cross-agency systems that support early childhood inclusion. Early Childhood Technical Assistance (ECTA) Center and Brookes Publishing sponsor the Institute.
New aRPy Ambassadors
Ten new aRPy Ambassadors have been selected to help build their state's capacity to use ECTA's Practice Improvement Tools that support the implementation of DEC Recommended Practices by local practitioners and families. The ambassadors represent parent training and information (PTI) centers, community parent resource centers (CPRC), Parent Technical Assistance Centers (PTAC), state agencies, institutes of higher education (IHEs), and technical assistance and professional development organizations. The project is a partnership between ECTA, DEC of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC), and Parent to Parent of Georgia/the Region B Parent Technical Assistance Center (PTAC). The ambassadors are: Tsitsi Nyabando, New Mexico; Samantha Hoggatt, Montana; Mesha Robinson, Georgia; Bethanne Vergean, Connecticut; Caitlyn Robinson, Louisiana; Amanda Berry, North Carolina; Kathy Powell, Florida; Cori Mielke, Oregon; Erin Reisdorf, New York; and Kathleen Gibson, Virginia.
News from the Field
Executive Order Increases Access to High-Quality Care and Supporting Caregivers
In 2019, more than three in four United States households that searched for care reported difficulty finding adequate care for their young children. This Executive Order on Increasing Access to High-Quality Care and Supporting Caregivers will enable families to have access to affordable, high-quality care and to have support and resources as caregivers themselves. Section 4:IV specifically calls out the Order’s impact on children with disabilities and the importance of serving children in inclusive settings. It reads in part, "The Secretary of Education and the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall identify and disseminate evidence-based practices for serving children with disabilities and their families in high-quality early childhood education programs, including Head Start. The Secretaries shall also take steps to ensure that services are inclusive of children with disabilities and their families..."
Re-Issuance of OSEP Memos on Use of RTI
The Office of Special Education Programs has re-issued two memoranda that speak to evaluation for eligibility under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA):
- OSEP Memo 11-07 - Response to Intervention (RTI) (January 21, 2011)
- OSEP Memo 16-07 - Response to Intervention (RTI) and Preschool Services (April 29, 2016)
The memos, read in part "... that, in some instances, local educational agencies (LEAs) may be using Response to Intervention (RTI) strategies to delay or deny a timely initial evaluation ... States and LEAs have an obligation to ensure that evaluations of all children suspected of having a disability, including evaluation of 3-, 4-, or 5-year-old children enrolled in preschool programs, are not delayed or denied because of implementation of an RTI strategy."
Updated Transition Resources from ECRDI
The Early Childhood Research and Development Initiative’s (ECRDI) long history of research in transition now include resources from the National Early Childhood Transition Center (NECTC) and Project STEPS (Sequenced Transition to Education in the Public Schools). ECRDI's current efforts extend the work of these refreshed transition resources previously funded by the U.S. Department of Education. This includes examining factors that promote successful transitions between infant/toddler programs, preschool programs, and public school programs for young children with disabilities and their families.
New Resource from IECMHC
These Centering Equity in IECMHC Resources, with the goal to support the development of equitable learning environments for Black children, is available from the Center of Excellence (CoE) for Infant & Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC). Promoting Black Joy and Countering Bias Through Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation is divided into three sections. Section One includes information on Black culture, history, cultural strengths, and values. Section Two guides users through the CoE Revised IECMH Consultation Competencies and provides practices and strategies to increase capacity to handle personal and institutional bias. Section Three shares case studies that highlight the real implications of harmful practices.
Let's Talk About Race & Racism
A survey of more than 15,000 families in 2019 and 2020 reveal how families of various backgrounds perceive and experience Race & Racism. Major findings show that children start noticing race during infancy, but parents often think kids aren't ready to talk about race and racism yet. The study also showed that parents of all races say they feel unprepared to talk about race and racism. Respondents were from a broad cross-section of the United States and its varied social and political demography.
"Eat, Sleep, Console" Reduces Hospital Stay and Need for Medication among Opioid-exposed Infants
Researchers have found the "Eat, Sleep, Console" (ESC) care approach to be more effective than using the Finnegan Neonatal Abstinence Scoring Tool (FNAST) to assess and manage opioid-exposed newborns. This is according to a national clinical trial by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Newborns cared for with ESC were medically ready for discharge approximately 6.7 days earlier and 63% less likely to receive medication as part of their treatment, compared to newborns cared for with FNAST. The current study is part of the Advancing Clinical Trials in Neonatal Opioid Withdrawal (ACT NOW) Collaborative, an effort funded by the Helping to End Addiction Long-term Initiative, or NIH HEAL Initiative, a trans-agency effort to speed scientific solutions to stem the national opioid crisis.
Infants' Health Record Data May Improve Early Autism Screening
Research supported by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) suggests that Infants' Health Record Data May Improve Early Autism Screening, an yield some promising insights that could help make early screening more accurate and objective. The research team noted that infants’ health care records include health indicators (such as low birth weight) and behavioral indicators (such as challenges with sleeping and feeding) that are often observed in children who later receive an autism diagnosis. Researchers hypothesized that they might be able to use machine learning to incorporate a range of health records measures and develop a predictive model to identify infants who are likely to later receive an autism diagnosis. This kind of model might be able to identify children with autism in the first year of life, before standard early autism screening tools can be used.