MN Centers of Excellence for Young children with Disabilities is an initiative designed to regionalize professional development system in Minnesota. The eight economic development regions are being used as a framework for this system. Each region is coordinated by a Regional ECSE Professional Development Facilitator who is responsible for coordinating the various professional development activities across their regions.
“Our vision is that early childhood professionals will have the knowledge, skills and supports necessary to be effective in their respective roles in order to increase the probability that young children with disabilities and their families achieve positive outcomes”
Our goal is to build regional capacity by training practitioners to use evidence-based strategies that can translate into practice across settings. Through this project, we will also be able to evaluate models of effective practice and disseminate those findings.
Overall, this project will:
- Develop a Cadre of Regional Consultants to Serve Key Stakeholders.
- Enhance Regional Training and Coaching Capacity.
- Support Regional Coordination Capacity.
- Build Statewide Training Dissemination Capacity.
- Create a “Knowledge Bank”.
A Comprehensive System of Personnel Development is one of sixteen requirements of a statewide system under Part C of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) used stimulus funds to scale-up the use of existing evidence-based practices among early childhood practitioners. This effort will develop and implement technical assistance, training, coaching and logistical support to early childhood programs (Birth-Five) across the state of Minnesota.
Research indicates that one-time face-to-face trainings are not effective in changing practitioner behavior over the long-term. For the trainings to be effective there must be consistent follow-up, mentoring and coaching provided to the practitioner. The regional network of training and technical assistance, including “just-in-time” technical assistance, promises to accomplish exactly that. Additionally, the regional framework will ensure that professionals across the state will be able to access high quality training and technical assistance regardless of their geographic area. Adding a strong follow-up component via the use of technology will help build a robust professional development system to effectively and efficiently meet the needs of practitioners in Minnesota’s system early childhood care and education.
The following links will provide you with interpreter contacts throughout MN.
1. MDE interpreter contact database (voluntary)
2. Additional interpreter contact information collected by district staff
Technical Assistance Center on Social Emotional Intervention for Young Children (TACSEI). The goal of the TACSEI project is to plan,
implement and sustain a professional development system to enhance the knowledge and skills of the early childhood workforce in meeting the social and emotional needs of young children, particularly those with or at risk for delays or disabilities in inclusive and natural environments.
Master cadre members received intensive training from Dr. Lise Fox before beginning training practitioners in the region. More information related to TACSEI can be found at: http://challengingbehavior.org/
Dr. Lise Fox, University of Southern Florida
Partnership between the Owatonna Public Schools’ ECSE program and Kids Korner Daycare
Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD)
The Centers of Excellence are working to build regional capacity towards “Serving Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Families: “Assessment, Evaluation and Intervention Practices” for children birth to three years of age and their families. This project will provide an
opportunity for selected practitioners (master cadre members) to enhance their skills in practice, mentorship and coaching and then go on to work with practitioners in the region.
Dr. Lillian Duran, Utah State University
Master Cadre Members:
- Pam Anfinson (Austin)
- Melissa Kossoris (Austin)
- Theresa Steege (Rochester)
- Sheri Strusz (Rochester)
- Stephanie Doyle (Albert Lea)
- Viki Sigler (Albert Lea)
Family Guided Routines Based Intervention (FGRBI)is a systematic approach to embed intervention consistently by all family members and service providers throughout the day rather than in individual, isolated therapy sessions. Routines are functional events of daily living that offer opportunities to
teach and practice meaningful skills in settings and situations as they are needed. By definition, they occur on a regular basis and are repeated frequently, offering multiple opportunities for teaching and learning. Family-guided routines are those functional and predictable activities that match the interests and individual schedules of the child and family. The family guides the selection of appropriate targets and contexts for intervention. Routines which are selected for intervention are predictable and positive for both the child and care provider to enhance the ease of use and the potential for positive outcomes. Cadre members are trained in this approach, so they will be able to offer training to other cohort members/practitioners in the region.
Dr. Juliann Woods, Florida State University
- Tanya Herbst (Albert Lea)