These resources support family services staff in helping families learn about their rights and their child’s rights, communicate concerns, ask questions, and serve as their child’s advocate throughout the special education journey. This support is essential because the special education process often requires families to advocate on behalf of their children, not only for early childhood education but also throughout their entire school experience and beyond.
This webinar features parents on their paths to becoming effective advocates for their child with disabilities. It reveals strategies you can use to support families in developing advocacy and leadership skills.
Find resources, research, and regulations related to the advocacy and leadership objective in the family outcomes component of the Head Start Parent, Family, and Community Engagement (PFCE) Framework.
Support family members in achieving the goals they set for their child and themselves and in actively participating in decision-making related to services provided to their child. This collection of checklists, video illustrations, and guides for practitioners and families, from the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA), follows practices recommended by the Division for Early Childhood (DEC) of the Council for Exceptional Children.
Learn strategies parents can use to clearly and effectively express concerns, ideas, or suggestions to professionals and other staff in communications related to the special education process.
Learn how early childhood professionals can meet the legal requirements for communicating with families during the Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) and Individualized Education Program (IEP) processes.
This resource for family members offers guidance on how to effectively share their knowledge of their child with early childhood professionals, to support their child’s ongoing learning and development.
This training session supports early education staff and families of infants and toddlers in considering ways families can be leaders within the family, program, and community. Strategies include advocating for one's own child and family, supporting other families, and working at the systems level to improve services to families of children with disabilities.
Share with families this information about their procedural rights under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
Use this resource to help family members understand what an IFSP is and the process of creating one for their child with disabilities.
Information here can help families understand the experiences of children who have a sibling with disabilities.
This glossary is a useful reference for families of children with disabilities who are access special education services and for the staff helping them.
Families with a child who has a disability often need a great deal of information — about their child’s disability, school services, therapy, local policies, funding sources, transportation, medical facilities, and much more. This website supports families looking for a state-based parent group that can help them find the information they need.
Resource Type: Article
National Centers: Parent, Family and Community Engagement
Last Updated: December 6, 2022