It is critical that the facilitation team be well versed in the legal mandates under Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and in those of early care and education, including the Head Start Performance Standards (HSPS) related to Child Find, recruitment, and enrollment. This includes being aware of the issues that emerge for families and service providers during the early identification and initial services process. Most systems that work with young children have mandates for Child Find and referral efforts. Facilitators should be prepared to facilitate discussions around individual program policies, agency referral processes, interagency agreements, and early care and education program mandates.
The video Getting Services, takes place in an Early Head Start program providing early care and education services to teen parents. The situations can be generalized to other early care and education programs. This video is shown in two parts in this session. Part 1 is eight minutes long. Stop the video at the segment, “Identification— Early Head Start to Early Intervention.” Start there when you’re ready to view the second segment of the video.
Sessions about early identification and early referral can become emotional. Therefore, it is important to create a safe environment so that people can fully participate in and learn from this experience. Facilitators must set a positive tone for discussions and reframe negative conversations into positive learning situations. During the development of ground rules, facilitators might add or suggest a rule about avoiding placing blame on specific agencies.