The Early Learning and Care Division has a strong role in the care and education of young children in California. This project supports many of their values including the value, for all personnel, of professional preparation and continuing staff development programs through which staff can acquire and enhance the knowledge and skills necessary for them to provide quality services to children and their families and which reflect the professional standards of their positions.
The following links may be of interest as you search the world wide web for information on children with disabilities and other topics related to Beginning Together. Many of the sites listed below are good starting points for additional links. The descriptions come from the sites themselves and are not offered with any official Beginning Together or WestEd endorsement.***
The Program for Infant/Toddler Care (PITC) was developed by WestEd, Center for Child and Family Studies in collaboration with the California Department of Education, Early Learning and Care Division to promote responsive, caring relationships for infants and toddlers. Participants in the Beginning Together must be fully certified in four training modules offered through PITC.
Resources for Information on Disabilities and Special Needs
The California MAP to Inclusion & Belonging… Making Access Possible, seeks to expand opportunities for children with disabilities and other special needs in child care and development programs. The project is committed to improving the delivery of quality child care services to children with disabilities or other special needs in inclusive settings. Their website contains a comprehensive listing of resources, including: how to support children in inclusive early childhood settings; information about legal and licensing issues; support for parents searching for child care for their children with disabilities or other special needs; disability-specific information; children with challenging behavior.
Your central “Hub” of information and products created for the network of Parent Centers serving families of children with disabilities CPIR would urge you to roam our site and look through the wealth of current information we are pleased to offer, including many of the resources originally developed by the National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities (NICHCY).
The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) is a unique federation of voluntary health organizations dedicated to helping people with rare “orphan” diseases and assisting the organizations that serve them. NORD is committed to the identification, treatment, and cure of rare disorders through programs of education, advocacy, research, and service.
ASHA is the professional and scientific association for speech–language pathologists, audiologists, and speech, language, and hearing scientists in the United States and internationally. ASHA’s mission is to promote the interests of and provide the highest quality services for its members and to advocate on behalf of people with communication disorders.
The Division for Early Childhood (DEC) is an organization designed for individuals who work with or on behalf of children with special needs, birth through age eight, and their families. DEC, a subdivision of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) is dedicated to promoting policies and practices that support families and enhance the optimal development of children. Children with special needs include those who have disabilities, developmental delays, are gifted/talented, and are at risk of future developmental problems.
The Infant Development Association of California is a multidisciplinary organization of parents and professionals committed to optimal developmental, social and emotional outcomes for infants, birth to three, with a broad range of special needs and their families. IDA advocates for improved, effective prevention and early intervention services, and provides information, education, and training to parents, professionals, decision makers and others.
National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC). As the profession of family child care changed, so too changed the focus of the NAFCC. The focus of NAFCC is to provide technical assistance to family child care associations. This assistance is provided through developing leadership and professionalism, addressing issues of diversity, and by promoting quality and professionalism through NAFCC’s Family Child Care Accreditation.
The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is the nation’s largest organization of early childhood professionals and others dedicated to improving the quality of early childhood education programs for children birth through age eight. NAEYC’s primary goals are to improve professional practice and working conditions in early childhood education and to build public understanding and support for high quality early childhood programs.
ZERO TO THREE is a national, nonprofit organization dedicated solely to advancing the healthy development of babies and young children. ZERO TO THREE disseminates key developmental information, trains providers, promotes model approaches and standards of practice and works to increase public awareness about the significance of the first three years of life.
Resources for Families
The Beach Center on Families and Disability is a rehabilitation research and training center on public policy affecting families who have children with disabilities. There have many reproduce–able articles and information available.
The Federation is a center for parents and parent organizations to work together on behalf of children with special needs and their families.
All children can succeed with the right support. This booklet provides information specifically for families seeking inclusion for their child with special needs during the first eight years of the child’s life.
The National Fathers Network (NFN), a non-profit organization, advocates for men as crucially important in the lives of their families and children. They provide support and resources to fathers and families of children with developmental disabilities and chronic illness, and the professionals who serve them.
Information About Laws
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a law ensuring services to children with disabilities throughout the nation. IDEA governs how states and public agencies provide early intervention, special education and related services to more than 6.5 million eligible infants, toddlers, children and youth with disabilities.
This page has information about the Americans with Disabilities Act including downloadable Child Care Centers and the ADA Flyer, information about enforcement, technical assistance programs, toll–free ADA information line, new or proposed regulations and the ADA mediation program.
State and National Early Intervention Resources
The California Department of Developmental Services (DDS) is the agency through which the State of California provides services and supports to children and adults with developmental disabilities. These disabilities include mental retardation, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, autism and related conditions. DDS is California’s lead agency for birth to three services under Part C of Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). There is a link to Early Start at the very top of the DDS home page.
There are 21 locally—based regional centers. Regional centers are nonprofit private corporations that have offices throughout California to provide a local resource to help find and access the many services available to individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.
This is the home page for the California Department of Education, Special Education Division. Here you can link to current information about services and programs provided by the department.
The California Early Start Program is an interagency system of coordinated services administered by the Department of Developmental Services in collaboration with the California Department of Education. The program provides early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities, age 0–3, and their families. Services are family–focused and designed to maximize a child’s growth and development. To be eligible, the child must have a developmental delay or disability or be at risk for delay or disability.
A program of the WestEd Center for Prevention & Early Intervention, CEITAN offers a wealth of training, technical assistance and support to agencies and programs that deliver early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families.
WestEd’s Center for Prevention and Early Intervention in Sacramento, provides statewide high quality training, technical assistance and resource development, dissemination, and support to state agencies and community programs that administer or provide prevention and early intervention services. The state agencies have included the California Departments of Education, Developmental Services, Health Services, Social Services, Mental Health, and Alcohol and Drug Programs. The Center for Prevention and Early Intervention is recognized as California’s premier source of training, technical assistance and resource development and provision supporting early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities and at-risk conditions and their families.
The Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute (FPG) is partnering with ZERO TO THREE to support the National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning. Implementation science capacity building will be achieved through the development of a tiered structure for active implementation capacity building. The project involves the development of a performance evaluation design within an implementation science framework that will allow for continuous quality improvement. FPG will play an active role in cross-sector leadership and partnership activities of the National Center.
Specific Disabilities Information
CHADD works to improve the lives of people with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder through education, advocacy, and support.
The Unicorn Children’s Foundation (UCF) is a national non–profit organization that supports education, treatment and research on behalf of children with communication and learning disorders.
This site provides information on the programs and services of the nation’s second largest health charity, it also offers a wealth of information on a variety of disability topics.
Helpful Sites for Behavior Questions
The Touchpoints Project believes that establishing and maintaining relationships with parents is the basis of preventive care. The Touchpoints model, developed by Dr. T. Berry Brazelton, aims to build alliances between parents and providers around key points in the development of young children. “Touchpoints” are predictable periods in a child’s development that can disrupt family relations, but can also provide an opportunity for practitioners to connect with parents.
The International Network for Children and Families (INCAF) is a public nonprofit agency that aims to help parents: develop strong emotional bonds with their children, use effective discipline strategies, improve parent–child communication, gain useable information on child development, and find greater enjoyment in family life.
The many books by Jane Nelson and co–authors are featured here.
This interactive web site lets you see more clearly your child’s temperament, find parenting tactics that work for your child.
*** Beginning Together and WestEd do NOT endorse or assume any responsibility for information found on these sites. The following links are provided as a source of information and resources. Please e-mail us information about other sites that will add depth and knowledge to these listings.