Professional Development for Home Visitors
Emmy Marshall: Hi, everyone, and thanks for joining today's webinar. We're pleased to offer today Professional Development for Home Visitors, being presented by the National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning. So far, we have about 350 people that have joined the webinar and really excited to see everybody coming on board and introducing yourself. We have people from all over the country. So it's always exciting to join such a large group of home visitors and have us all together in one place. My name is Emmy Marshall. I'm a senior training and technical assistance specialist. I'm very excited to be co-presenting today with my NCECDTL Consortium colleague, Dr. Elita Amini Virmani. So, Dr. Amini Virmani is the director of Training for the Program for Infant/Toddler Care at WestEd Center for Child and Family Studies. Before we begin, I'd like to go over some Adobe Connect features to help us interact during the webinar. So if you see the chat box to the immediate right of the PowerPoint slides, we'll be asking some questions and asking you to respond throughout the session, so that's where you type those responses, and then to the bottom right of your slide is the Q&A box. So if you have questions about the presentation, please type your questions there, and we are going to try to get to as many of those as possible today at the end of the webinar.
For any questions we can't get to, we're going to to post the answers on the MyPeers Home Visiting Community, and we'll tell you a little bit more about that later. There is also, in the file section of your Adobe platform, is a PDF of today's presentation. If, for any reason, you get disconnected from the webinar, you can use the same link that you used to join the first time to rejoin, and also, I'd like to let you know that this session is now being recorded. So it will be available afterwards, and another important thing to know is that we have an evaluation link on the last slide today, so we ask that you complete that evaluation for a couple of reasons. First of all, we really appreciate your feedback. We use that to continuously improve our webinars, and secondly, when you complete the evaluation, you can then download a certificate of completion for your participation.
If there's more than one person that's sharing a registration link and a computer screen, you can forward the evaluation link to your colleagues and each one of you can receive a certificate of completion. Okay. Let's get started. Here's what we have in store for us today. By the end of this presentation, we're hoping that you should be able to identify home visiting skills and practices that are important for achieving positive parent and child outcomes. We also hope that you'll be able to identify tools that home visitors can use to assess your skill level, to explore professional- development opportunities, to improve home-visiting practice and then to be able to know of resources that are available for ongoing professional development. This is our agenda today and what we're going to cover in the next 55 minutes. So we're going to look at roles of the home visitor, tools for skill assessment, professional-development opportunities and, again, resources. So before we get started, I'd like to ask Elita, if you'll lay the groundwork for our conversation today by talking about what we know from research has shown to be effective for home visitors and promoting positive parent-child outcomes.
Elita Amini Virmani: Absolutely. Hello, everyone. I'm Elita Amini Virmani, and I am really happy to be here with you today and delighted that I saw some of you in the chat that said that you're here, but not only here, but here with bells on, so love that enthusiasm. I want for us to really think together about what the role of the home visitor is in promoting positive parent and child outcomes, and, as Emmy said, let's start by just kind of taking a step back and thinking about where we are with home-visitation services for young children and their families.
You know, home visiting is not new. It's been around for about more than 30 years, and, however, in the last, I would say, 5 to 10 years, programs have been receiving unprecedented levels of attention and support, and this is partly due to the wide dissemination of research findings that demonstrate that the first 5 years of life are a critical time in the development of children's cognitive, social, and emotional development, but also that, you know -- that our work with parents is particularly important and that there are several recognized models of home visiting that have been, now, you know, promoted as ways to promote school readiness for children and by way of improving parent capacities to care for their children. So Head Start, which served over 69,000 children in the 2015-16 program year, as you likely know, is one of the most comprehensive of the well-known home-visitation programs. Okay. So this is one of my favorite quotes from Carol Klass, who has really been a leader in the field of home visitation. She says, "Historically, in parent education programs, the parent educators are the experts in children's development. In contrast, the home visitor is an empathic listener, consultant, resource, guide, advocate, and partner."
I want you to take a moment to think for a second about who you identify, like -- What you perceive your role to be as a home visitor? Do you see your role as a teacher, as an educator, as a facilitator, a family engagement specialist? And if you feel like it, feel free to type that into the chat so that I can get a sense of, kind of, where all of you are coming from in terms of how you identify, in terms of your role. Family educators, I see teacher. And teacher, mentor.
I think many -- Thank you. Family support, parenting support, home-based teacher, partner, coach, mentor, social worker -- There are several that are coming in. That's really wonderful to see, in part because I think each of us defines our role a little bit differently in the home-visiting realm, and I see some words that are sticking out -- collaborator. So what does it mean? I think all of us -- you know, the next layer -- It's hard to get into when we're on the phone together -- is that how one defines an educator varies, right? So maybe when you say educator, you mean facilitator or maybe you really mean educator. So when we're working with parents, we need to keep in mind, we often come in this role as an expert or a teacher or an educator or someone that knows something, and you do. You know a lot of things, but what we find is that this is often not what parents respond most positively to. So while the parents, themselves, often pull for the expert or the teacher and ask to come out, what we find is most helpful in effecting change is collaborating with them, partnering with them, being active observers of their lives and asking parents questions that are meaningful to them and that help them further their thinking about their child and their way of being with their child. So we really see the home visitor as supporting the parents' role as their child's first teacher, and while it's really tempting to know, kind of, the right way or start to take over for the parent, you know, when walking into the home, what's really most helpful in the long run is if we partner with parents to support them in strengthening their own interactions with children. So I want you to just take this vignette for a moment and think about it.
So imagine you're entering a home, one of your family's homes, and you sit on the floor, and you sit, you know, and the family is like, "Oh, you know, so-and-so's here. Your teacher is here." And so you sit on the floor with the child, and the parent watches you in your interactions with their 1-year-old, and I want you to think about, kind of, what this communicates to the family about their role in their child's development. And kind of further complicated -- Further complicated, you know -- is that, okay, so we work with, you know, many vulnerable families that already might feel like their competence as a parent is in question, and I think even more reason to kind of think about, okay, so how do we really, truly establish partnerships with family and focus on the family so that they're the ones on the floor with the child, and I really appreciate all of you being very active in the chat. I'm kind of trying to scan those as I talk, which is a little bit hard, but I think it's a way for us to get to know each other and how we process our role. Okay. So. Next. So this is kind of like an oversimplification of how we get to child outcomes, but it's an important one to kind of think about is that, you know, there's something in between, right, the child and the home visitor, and that's the parents and the family, and what we know now from most of the research is that changes in parent behavior lead to changes in child outcome, and so that really impacts how we see our role.
So an analysis of data, for example, from 10 Early Head Start programs showed that parents' emotional responsiveness and supportiveness during play led to improved outcomes for children in cognitive and emotional development, which we know are two domains central to school readiness and school success. I like to think of it in terms of life readiness, but often it's talked about in terms of school readiness. So in addition to, you know, research on changes in parent-child outcomes, we also now have a lot of information on the role that the home visitor plays in that success, and so this is what we're really focused on today, is, how can we be effective as home visitors and home-based programs? How do we develop the skills to offer information to parents in a way that allows parents the real kind of -- that supports parents as they're interacting with their children and that continues to remain a central part of their life when the home visitor is not there? Okay. I see several people also -- I'm just scanning the chat -- saying that, "I like to encourage parents to sit on the floor with me," or, "I like the idea of meeting parents where they are and offering NPAT based on that." So, from each other, I think we can learn a lot, explaining the reasons behind what you're doing. It's really helpful, I think, as a learning community, to scan these responses just to get ideas from your peers. So, now, Emmy, before we move into looking at which skills can make an impact, can you share what we know about our current Head Start home-based workforce?
Emmy: Yeah. I'd love to share this information, Elita. Thanks so much. There is a lot of numbers here on the screen, but what I want to point out to you is that we all know that the current performance standards require that, as of August the 1st of 2018, that all home visitors in the home-based program must have a minimum of a home-based CDA credential or a comparable credential or equivalent coursework and also demonstrate competency in implementing and delivering home visits, but if you look at this data here from the program information reports from 2016, there's a really high number of home visitors that have bachelor's degrees, almost 46%, and then if we scan across there to home-visitor supervisors, we see that a little over 28 percent of home-visiting supervisors have advanced degrees. So we know, by looking at the chart, that one thing that we have is, you know, very well educated and a high number of staff with degrees or credentials. So we can feel really good about that. I also just want to talk a little bit more about the strengths of our current Head Start home-visiting staff, and the data here, on the screen, is taken from the 2011 Baby FACES Report. So we saw that 90% of children from Spanish-speaking homes actually have a home visitor who speaks Spanish in that particular evaluation and that set of Early Head Start programs that were reviewed in the study. And then also that home visitors were using a variety of strategies when they didn't speak the language that the family spoke. The same study also showed us that home visitors participate in a number of professional- development activities, so we know that people are very interested in continuing to develop their skills, and one thing that's really good to hear is that home visitors report positive feelings about their current jobs, so we really love to see that.
I also wanted to share that I had the privilege of observing a home visit recently in Milwaukee, and the mom and dad and their 2-year-old were living in one-bedroom apartment that they were sharing with the mother's parents. The 90-minute visit took place in their living room, where the only furnishings were a mattress and a rug on the floor. The home visitor could not have been more positive, warm, engaging and supportive and had the most amazing ability to engage the mom and the dad in the activities that she had planned for them for the day. It was truly inspiring, and I felt very lucky to be able to be there. Being a home visitor, as we know, is not for everybody. It's really hard work, and sometimes, there's very difficult situations, but for those of us who have seen the impact that you can have on a family's well-being, it's worth every minute of effort that's put into it. I just really want to take a minute to just send out a huge thanks for all that you do in the field and the passion that you bring to your work. It's truly remarkable work. If you could, before Elita shares some practices that she has been using in her work -- Elita heads the Parent-Child -- I'm going to get the name wrong, Elita.
Elita: It's okay. Do you want me to say it?
Emmy: Go ahead. Yeah. If you don't mind saying it because I wanted to know --
Emmy: About your expertise.
Elita: So, I direct the Program for Infant/Toddler Care Home Visiting Institute, as well as, now, I oversee all of the training for the Program for Infant/Toddler Care, but one of my great loves and passions is directing our intensive seminars for home visitors, and, yes. I have deep respect for all that you do, as well.
Emmy: Thank you, Elita, and I just wanted to -- Before we hear from Elita and her work and what she has to share with us today, if you could share a practice that you're currently using that you have found to be effective in your work with families, if you could share those practices in the chat box. Right away, we see positive praise to parents, very important to have a strength-based platform to work from, goal setting. If you don't know where you're going, you don't know where you're going to to end up, so I think that's an important positive behavior to support. Following a routine -- That sounds like such an important thing for families with young children. Yeah, I love the baby steps, noticing the baby steps and working on and appreciating each step in the process. Wonderful. Lots of praise. I love someone is using a strong curriculum and using the HOVRS and Pee Wee affectation. Relationship building -- absolutely, including fathers. Building on daily care routine. Yes! Thank you. This is excellent. Well, Elita, I think that you have a challenge because we've heard so many effective home-visiting practices.
Elita: I know. I know. It's amazing.
Emmy: Yeah. So what else can you tell us, or maybe you can just reiterate some of these things that we've heard from our home visitors.
Elita: Absolutely. Absolutely. I'm just kind of scanning them as they come in, too. "Empathy, not sympathy," I love that because it really kind of emphasizes this active listening piece. I think so, yes. As you can see on the screen, these are, you know -- These are the skills that are essentially established by the research that work, with promoting parents' developmental support for their children, and so I'm going to just let you scan this list for a minute, many of which have brought -- I would love to just sit and read all of your responses, but I need to just stay focused. So, okay, I will kind of move us along here. So keeping thinking about, okay, so if we know that establishing positive relationships, responding to families' unique strength and culture, facilitating developmentally supportive interactions and establishing positive partnerships are key to home visiting, then how do we do that? I mean, I think, you know, we talk a lot about establishing relationships in this work. I think we need to consider what are the skills that help us as professionals get there in terms of real relationship building, and something that, you know, Emmy brought up, which is so critical, is this notion of mindfulness and, really, kind of, all of the practices that are related to being empathic often relate to reflective practice and mindfulness, too. So I would say that mindfulness, empathy, and reflective practice kind of are all striving to see the other in a way that really reflects back to them who they are and so that they can do the same for their young children. And so when we think about mindfulness, you know, we know that this is a skill now that is very significant in establishing positive relationships with parent and child, and it's really the ability, right, to be really present, both emotionally and cognitively, and in the moment.
And so what are things we do as professionals, then, to promote our own mindfulness? It's kind of like these layers, right, that our capacity to be mindful then allows us to enter the home in a way that's centered and grounded so that the parents -- and we can also teach parents mindfulness skills, as well, and this really does influence our interpersonal interactions with parents, and then, you know, if we're helping parents develop these skills, then, with them and their children. In terms of the empathy piece, I think we promote empathy when we engage in reflective practice. Reflective practice is really the practice of perspective-taking. It's a practice of stepping back and thinking about how one engages in interaction, you know, after the visit, thinking about what just happened there, you know, and what came up for me? Was that the parent? Was that about me? Was it about how I was having -- Was it about my day? Was it about what they evoked in me, and really being able to unpack that so that you can enter clearly, I would say. As you all know very well, it's really emotional work. You know, in my role, when I was a home visitor, I felt often kind of stirred up when I worked with families, depending on the level of trauma or the work -- you know, what the family was dealing with. So engaging in reflective practice is really critical to this work and is really an important way, also, I'd say, to enhance reflective function capacity in parents. So this, again, is critical to a parent's ability to establish a secure attachment relationship with their child. If the parent can see from the child's point of view, they are more likely to develop secure attachment relationships with them, and we know that those are so foundational. So that's kind of one pathway there. In terms of cultural humility, I would say, I think, more than anything, I just want you to be familiar with that term.
You know, it's really a way to think about our work with families and learning about families' culture as -- that we're never done, you know, that we're not -- We might have some cultural competence, but that there's no thing that we can arrive at. So, okay, and then in terms of strength-based approach, again, many of you have mentioned this in the chat, right? It's building upon family strengths, building upon what we see them doing, building upon families' existing sums of knowledge, both language and otherwise. You know, really, by highlighting and reflecting back the strengths we see in families, it motivates them to continue to build on those strengths and, in parallel, helps them to really see the strengths in their child. Okay, so I talked a little bit. I really feel a lot of these -- You know, when you think about relational work, a lot are overlapping. So I touched on responding to each family's unique strengths and culture when I was talking about focusing on family strengths, and I think the only other piece here that's really important is connecting to and being aware of the resources available to families in the communities that you're working in so that you can provide families with the supports that they needed, that are culturally relevant and responsive.
Again, you know, when we're facilitating developmentally supportive parent-child interactions, here, we're really focused on catching parents doing great things and noticing. I always think, as a parent, you know -- I have a 3-year-old and a 6-year-old, and I always think, "Gosh, wouldn't it be lovely if someone could just notice when I was doing things right?" Because so often, you know, it just helps us remember what to continue to do and the meaning it has, and several of you have kind of mentioned this in your chat. And then, finally, you know, establishing collaborative partnerships. Again, it's really establishing a relationship that's a real collaboration, that's not unidirectional, that's not me telling you what to do because I know what's right and you don't know. It's about me learning what you know and giving that light and strength. So, and, of course, also, you know, using ongoing screening and assessment to inform -- inform, kind of, how home visits are going and our work with families, based on the Early Learning Outcomes Framework and other resources put together by Head Start. So, Emmy, I think this is where I turn it over to you to talk a little bit, right here. Are we entering a poll, I think, maybe? Yes, we are. Sorry. Go ahead, Emmy. Uh-oh, I can't hear you, Emmy.
Emmy: Thanks, Elita. We don't have this set up as a poll, but we do want people to reflect and talk about where they are. So, and you don't have to share this in the chat box. Just think about where you are, if you're absolutely -- Oh! We do have it as a poll. Hold on.
Elita: Look at that!
Emmy: Yay! So go ahead, because this way it is anonymous and confidential, so just want to get a feeling of your sense of where your skill level is. So everybody can complete that, and we're looking really good. Out front is, "I feel pretty good about my skill level most of the time." That's excellent. So that's great, and there's nothing at all wrong with having my skill level, "I wish my skill level was higher." You know, some of us always -- No matter how high our skill level is, we want to continue to make it even better. So this is excellent, but it does look like we have a high number that are very happy with their skill level. That's outstanding. And then a lot of people feel very good about where they are, and we have people that are working on their skill level, so I appreciate your sharing. Thanks so much. Okay, let's go ahead and move on to our next slide. Okay, so now that Elita has shared some of the effective practices with us, we're going to look at some tools that are available for our home visitor skill assessment. So when we're looking at these tools, there's lots of ways that these can be used. So you can think about using these tools for self-reflection. It's also really good to work with your supervisor or your coach or both to set goals after you use a skill assessment and then to work on the pieces of practice that you're interested in continuing to work on. So we know that there are a lot of benefits to skill assessment. It really helps you to see, in a very concrete way, the content and quality of the activities that you're providing during home visiting and, really, the quality of the home visitor parent-and-child relationship. And then those can be used to inform your practice, to guide overall program improvement and to have ongoing, continuous quality improvement.
I'm going to share a little bit. This is a tool that you see here, on your screen, was taken from a document, and we're going to share the link to this document in our resources section, design options for home visiting evaluation or if you have a short -- has produced this home-visit observation brief, and, again, you'll be able to click on a link and access this, but it has the description of a number of home-visiting assessment tools, and so this is just a partial list that we've put together here to talk about some of the highlights of these tools, and it's not an exhaustive list, and it's not that we're endorsing any particular tool. We have heard, though, that a lot of Head Start home-visiting programs use the HOVRS, the Home Visiting Rating Scale, which measures the home visitor's effectiveness in engaging parent, child, and home-visiting activities. Right now, there are two HOVRS that are in use. There's the original that is in the 2008 book "Developmental Parenting." And then the program, the HOVRS developers, have a more current, which is evidently, I've heard, a easier SKU'd version. I'm going to get training on it in January, but it's the HOVRS-A+ version two, and right now, it's only available through attending a HOVRS training, but I understand there's some work to get that available without the training. I do know that the program developers do recommend attending the training in order to get the most benefit out of that tool. The home-visit characteristics and content form is really used to document specific concrete characteristics of home visits, like the length of the visit, who participated, the language that was used, and it was developed to supplement the HOVRS, but it can also be used alone, or it can be used in conjunction with other home-observation instruments.
The home-visit observation form was designed to provide a description of the content and the process of home visits. The home-visit assessment instrument is an observational tool that primarily examines the behavior of the service provider during a home visit, and then the last one we have listed here is supportive interactions with families, and this one really digs into examining the interactions with the parents and the caregivers, and the scale measures such thing as the home visitor's ability to utilize strategies to ensure well-being, empowerment and mental health of the parent, especially related to facilitating their child's social and emotional development and also to facilitate the quality of parent-child interaction. So each of these tools sound intriguing to me in their own way. I think it's worth exploring this brief with your supervisor, and then selecting a tool that will work best for you. So if you could, in your chat box -- if you could share whether or not you are currently using an assessment tool, and, if you are, if you could share which tools you're using. I'm seeing the HOVRS quite a lot -- lots of HOVRS. And then we see some tools that are used for child development. Okay. Great. All right. So we're getting more tools now that look like they're child development and screening and assessment tools. Sorry that we can't have a dialogue here and find out if they're being used in some way for home-visiting observation.
So all the data that we get from different sources all contribute to the work that we're doing in different ways, so thanks for sharing those. At this point, we're going to talk about some professional development opportunities or skill development, so this graphic here is the name of a document, professional development tool, to improve the quality of infant and toddler care, a review of the literature, and what this meta-analysis of professional development strategies found is that the best, most effective strategies are based on an identified need, so that's where that skill assessment would come in, and then have opportunities to practice those skills, so not just a knowledge acquisition but also an ability to practice using those skills and maybe through role-playing, maybe through coaching, maybe through observation of videotapes. And then you should include strength-based performance feedback, so, you know, here, again, this is the way we work with our families, and we would like for our supervisors to have that same type of relationship with us, where we're working from what's going well and working on improving those things.
So it also involves self-reflection and should include opportunities for coaching and for reflective supervision. So we talked a little bit at the very beginning of the webinar about the requirements for home visiting staff, and I saw that someone asked, in the chat box, what you need in 2018. It's August 1st of 2018 that home-visiting staff, people that are providing home visits in a home-based program, should have a credential or comparable coursework, so we'll talk in a minute about where there's a CDA credential available or if there isn't any more specifics, I'd really point you to that particular performance standard, 1302.91 (e)(6) to get those specific staff qualifications, so that you'll have that information, and it also has the dates of when the standards go into place, as well. So the other things that the standards tell us is that we should all receive an orientation. We should have the opportunity to participate in a coaching strategy and that we should receive regular and ongoing supervision. So one of the ways to get training, another one of the performance standards, is that we're implementing a research-based home-based curriculum, so it's -- We know, from the 2016 performance program information reports that 61 percent of Head Start home-based programs are using one of the following -- research-based home-based curriculum, Parents as Teachers, Partners for a Healthy Baby, or Growing Great Kids, and we know that each of these offer training in using the curriculum, and, in addition, they also -- Some of them also offer additional ongoing professional-development opportunity. So I know, Elita, you have some expertise with reflective supervision, so could you share information on this slide?
Elita: Sure. You know, and we touched on this a little bit, but I just think what's important is to really see this as a pathway to empathic practice with families and think about it as a way to support secure attachment between parents and young children, so there's -- A lot of the literature talks about, you know, reflective function, and what that means is -- I touched on that briefly, but what it really means is, again, can, as a parent, for example, can you see from your child's perspective? Can you notice what your child is doing as it relates to kind of their motivations for doing it? And we know that that seems to be -- more and more research is suggesting that -- that seems to be what underlies secure attachment relationships, so, you know, people often talk about sensitivity, but I think, if we want to even get more specific with promoting parent capacities, we need to really take a hard look at, okay, what are some of the pathways there? So I would suggest that reflective supervision is a really critical pathway to a parent's being able to see from their child's perspective and, in turn, develop secure relationships with their children that we know are really the cornerstone of the children's success and long-term health and development.
And we hope that this can happen at all levels of an organization, so, ideally, you know, with organizations, ideally, there's someone on the outside that's providing reflective supervision, or there's a group of directors that are providing this support to one another, and then supervisors are providing this to their staff, meaning that they're providing kind of a regular meeting time to see from the staff's perspective and listen to them about what it is that they're wrestling with in their work with families. What's coming up for them? What do they see? And, again, then, having home visitors engage in a similar process with families that I would consider this active skill building, even though it's not telling -- Again, it's not kind of telling the parents what to do, but it's more providing a space and time and active listening ear for parents to be able to talk with you about what it is that they're seeing their child do and what do they see? What do they imagine their child is thinking about? The more that we can cultivate this skill with the parents, the more likely they are to develop really strong relationships with their children. So I think we really need to consider this as a really solid approach to, and a strength-based approach to promoting families' ability to see from their child's point of view, again.
I also think it's an opportunity for us to promote culturally and linguistically responsive practice because, when we implement kind of systems that see from the other's perspective, then we allow people, staff, families, to bring their whole selves into the interaction in a kind of not-predetermined way, which, again, is getting at, you know, allowing us to facilitate this kind of building upon strengths and having families articulate their own strengths, having families articulate their child's strength, and us witnessing that and working from there and promoting that.
The other piece of this that I think is really critical is thinking about, you know, we talk so often about executive function skills, and really, what executive function skills -- I mean, there's several things, but one of which is perspective taking, is planning, is thinking, and so we, I think, in a lot of ways, it's kind of our responsibility to give this power to families, to ask questions that help families think about their life, about their child's life, about, you know, how do we engage in a way that's really -- We're there for a very short period in the family's life, right? So how do we walk away and know that a family can have the skills to solve problems, that they've developed the skills to see from their child's perspective? Anyway, so that is -- I really think that we need to think about, you know, what the implications of reflective supervision could be and reflective practice could be and what the parent requirements of it are and what it yields us, really, you know, working less reactively and more reflectively, and I love seeing that several people are at least meeting once a month to engage in reflective practice with one another. Okay, I think. Emmy, why don't you go ahead and take us through this next set here?
Emmy: Yeah. This is -- Thanks, Elita. I think that thinking about reflective practice and reflective supervision, and, like you said earlier, it's also connected to being mindful and really thoughtful about our work and that all of these do seem to be very interwoven. And, as we get closer to the end of our session, I think that it's important to kind of pull those threads together. So another strategy of profession development strategy that a lot of training has taken place over the last year for Head Start and Early Head Start has been on practice-based coaching.
So practice-based coaching is a research-based coaching model. It's the culmination of a lot of years of study on what works best in coaching, and it's a cyclical process where you use a tool or a process, like some of the tools we've talked about, to identify the areas that you'd like to work on and then setting goals and action steps to move in that direction, and it involves participating in observation of your skills, so, in home visiting, some of the things we need to think about is, what does that mean? How do you observe a home visitor without intruding in the home-visitor relationship? Is videotaping the best way to do that, or what's the best way? So there's a lot of extra considerations when you're thinking about coaching and the steps involved for a home-based program. We want to think about those things. We want to think about the impact it has on the family to make sure that they're comfortable and that they've given consent if someone is coming in, in addition to the home visitor, to observe the home visitor. But then part of that process is, then, reflecting, viewing those tapes or reviewing the comments from the observer and reflecting on what happened and sharing feedback about the practices. And then, once you have the skill level that you'd like with that particular goal, then the cycle moves around and moves back to the beginning with another set of goals and skills that you'd like to work on.
So now we're going to look at some resources for professional development, and here is -- We had talked earlier that one of the new performance standards is that by August of 2018, home-visiting staff will need to have a credential or comparable coursework, equivalent coursework to a competency, and demonstrate competency in home visiting, so I refer you to the performance standards that we went over earlier to get all of that information that you need from the performance standards. But there is a Council for Professional Recognition that launched a home visitor, CDA assessment-and -credentialing system that went into effect in July of 2016, so that's one avenue. For this credential, you need to complete 120 hours of formal training, and then there's also a competency process that goes along with that. The council is currently offering an amnesty program, if anyone is interested in that, that will allow anyone with a CDA with an expiration date as far back as January 1 of 2007 to renew online by December 29 of 2017. So you can check with CDA website for more information about that. We also have, on the ECL Casey, we have a new database that has been created by our partners at the National Center for Parent, Family, and Community Engagement, and this is a database for credential and degree programs for staff who work with families, so you can search credentials or certificates or degree programs. You can search by state or major or concentration, so these are primarily for family support workers but also includes some information that might match with home visitors. And then those of you that have worked in the early childhood field for awhile may know of Early Educator Central, and, even though this site is primarily for infant and toddler center-based staff and family childcare providers, they also have some health and safety courses that could be applicable to home visitors, as well.
This is something that I'm really excited about for all of us that have been in the home-visiting field for awhile. We've always wanted something that is a national recognition of the home-visiting field and of the home-visiting professional, and I think this institute, which is called the Institute for the Advancement of Family Support Professionals, is going to help and support the professionalization of home visiting across the country. So there is, as of November 1 of 2017, there is a professional development platform, and it's a suite of online professional development modules. These modules are from, primarily, from the states of Iowa and Virginia, who have been doing online home-visitor training for awhile. It's funded by Health Resources and Services Institute through a maternal infant early-childhood home visiting grant that also has additional funding from the Heising-Simons Foundation, and their intent is to have this available to all home visitors, regardless of funding or where you receive your funding, so this is very exciting.
I encourage you to check this out. There's some upcoming modules for supporting immigrant and dual-language learning families, and then something really exciting in October of next year is a tool called My Career Compass, and it will be a personalized learning map where you can assess your current skills and identify a pathway to get to your professional-development goals, so really excited about this institute. They also have plans for a national certification. I don't know any timeframe on that, and they're also working on a set of national competencies for home visitors. Off the top of my head -- I can't remember the exact number -- but I remember seeing that there's about 28 states in the country that have some type of home-visiting competencies or standards, so this is state by state, so it'll be really nice if we have the ability to have something that's recognized and consistent across the country, especially for a national program like Head Start and Early Head Start.
So speaking of states, we also -- This is just a very, very partial list, to give an example. I know, from working in home visiting in a national perspective for awhile that there's a lot of states that have professional development opportunities for home visitors, so this is just three of those. Kansas TRAIN is a basic home-visitor training. There's an online portion, and then there's an ability to enroll in a 2-day face-to-face course after you complete the online training. University of New Mexico Center for Developmental Disabilities has a set of core competencies for home visitors in their state and some accompanying training, and then Georgia Home Visiting through Georgia Great Start -- Great Start Georgia has a plan to expand professional development initiatives in there by building on the Georgia Early Childhood Professional Development System. So I asked you and encourage you to check and see -- I am so sorry. I know there's an echo on my line. I don't know what to do about it. I'm so sorry. I would encourage you to check in your state to see what's available. So does anybody know of home- visiting training in your state that's available that you're now taking advantage of or that you know of? You want to share that in the chat box. All right. So I'm seeing some. There's a website that's being shared. Someone is bringing a training to Hawaii. There's a CDA training that's going on in New Jersey, So. I encourage you. There are maternal, infant, early-childhood home-visiting programs in every state and territory. I encourage you that they would be a really good resource for knowing of any professional- development opportunities in your state. I think that might be a really good place to check to find out what's going on in your state, if you don't already know. Okay, and I know somebody typed in from Arkansas.
I know that they have a lot of professional-development work going on there. The Program for Infant/Toddler Care, PITC, Home Visiting Institute, and we're fortunate to have the director of that program, Dr. Elita Amini Virmani, presenting with us today. Okay. And Elita has shared the website. Okay. Great. So you see, there's lots and lots of options across the country, so I think, with a little checking, you may be able to find what's available in your state. I want to encourage everybody to join the MyPeers home-visiting community. We have about 800 or so members now, and it's a place where you can ask the kind of questions that you're asking today and get answers from your peers and other colleagues in the field that might have some of that information that they can share with you, so here, at the bottom of the screen, is the contact information to fill out to join MyPeers, if you're not already a member. So here are some additional resources.
I want to point out the bottom one we talked about today. It's a list of some of those home-visit observation tools, so you can go there and get a copy of that brief, and it has even more tools there that you can look at. We have a little bit of time left, and let's look at our questions that have come in. Okay, so there's a question about the CDA Council amnesty program. So what I would do is encourage you to go to the website. So you can get that if you download the PDF of today's PowerPoint presentation, and you can go to the CDA for Professional Recognitions website, and they will have information there about their amnesty policy. Let me look back through my notes and see if I can pull that back up. Hold on a second. I have to go back to the slide.
Elita: Emmy, there's a question, too, about, if you have a BA, will you still need to have a CDA? I was wondering if you could address that one, as well.
Emmy: If you have a BA degree, will you still need a CDA? I would encourage you to go back and read the Head Start Program Performance Standards that we shared today about the requirements because we want to make sure that -- that you are meeting those requirements.
Emmy: I would encourage you to speak with your supervisor and your staff that are responsible for making sure that the qualifications are met.
Elita: Usually there is. My sense, I mean, from what you've said, shared with me before, too, is that, you know, they have a minimum of a CDA credential or equivalent coursework, so, you know, in the terms of equivalent coursework, in some cases, a BA might work. It probably just depends on the specifics of your BA.
Emmy: Yeah, because you never know what any local requirements might be, so that's why I'm hesitant to address that.
Elita: Got it. That makes sense.
Emmy: Yeah. That's why I think it's important to go back and read the standard and then also know what your local requirements are because somebody could, you know -- a program could say that you require a BA in a certain field, or another program might say you just have to have a bachelor's degree, so you have to meet the program performance standards, as well as any local policies and regulations.
Elita: Okay. Great. Thank you for clarifying that.
Emmy: But it's a great question. Really good question. So the way that the, again, like you said, Elita, have a minimum of a home-based CDA credential or comparable credential or equivalent coursework.
Elita: And I don't know the answer to this. Emmy, do you, about where the HOVRS training is in January?
Emmy: Oh, yeah. I have -- There are -- I would go to the -- Let's see. Let's find out information. This training that I'm going to is closed already, to the Adolescent Parenting Program in North Carolina.
Emmy: So that one is not open. I know that they are just madly out there, training now, so I would encourage you to -- Let's see. Where would you go to look for that information? That's a good question.
Elita: It is a good question. You know, Lori Roggman leads up that work. I don't know that I would -- I mean, I'm hearing she is really busy, but she would probably direct you to the right person.
Emmy: So what I -- I just Googled HOVRS Training. I don't know that there is a website that you can go to to look for that. And I will also contact Lori, Dr. Roggman and see what she recommends, just as far as where to go to find out about training dates, and I will place that information onto MyPeers.
Elita: Great, And then someone is asking, Emmy, which is a good question, is because there's been so much great chatter in the box, I think someone was asking, can we print this screen, the feedback, essentially, that's been going on in the chat box. That's a good question.
Emmy: [Laughter] That is a great question. I am going to ask our support staff.
Elita: You might be able to copy and paste it. I don't know. I haven't tried it, but --
Emmy: And so I know it's the end of our time together, so I want to encourage you to go to the link here. It's the evaluation link that's on the closing side, and you can complete that evaluation link, and at the end of the evaluation, it will prompt you to open up a certificate of completion. And again, if you are sharing the screen with someone, and only one person registers, you can forward that registration link, and then they can access this survey there. I mean, actually, you forward this SurveyMonkey link to them, and then they can complete the evaluation and receive a certificate of completion, as well. So we're going to take the questions that you have here. I can stay on for another minute, and I know that some of you need to go on to other things. I can stay here and try to answer some of the questions that are in the chat box. So thank you all for joining today. I appreciate your participation. I appreciate the great ideas that you shared today, and I appreciate the work that you do every day. Thank you so much. Take care.
Elita: Yeah. Thanks to you all.
Emmy: Bye-bye. Thanks, Elita. I appreciate everything you've contributed.
Elita: Thank you so much, everyone.
Emmy: Somebody asked, "How do I print the PowerPoint?" It's under the file section. It's to the right of the PowerPoint slide. You just click on that, and you can print a PDF of the PowerPoint. There's a question about whether or not the Family Development credential is comparable to the CDA, and I think that that's something that you're going to need to look at with your supervisors and your managers. And you can look at the Professional Development -- Council for Professional Recognition to look at the coursework that's required for that CDA that might be part of the process that you look at to see if they're comparable. If you have an associate's in Early Childhood, do I still need the home visiting CDA? Again, it's not really defined what comparable means, so I think that's going to have to -- You know, programs are going to need to look at what a CDA home visiting credential looks like and see what's covered in another, like, an associate's in Early Childhood, would that cover the same content that you would go over if you were to complete the credential for home visiting.
Okay, so I'm going to post the HOVRS Training information on MyPeers when I find that out from Dr. Roggman. We don't have any more questions, so I'm going to go ahead and close out for today. Thank you all again for those that stayed on for a few more minutes.
Thanks, everybody. Bye-bye.
In this webinar, find out what makes home visitors most effective in delivering Head Start home-based services. Learn the key skills that can help to promote success for families enrolled in the program. Explore tools and strategies to assess and improve the skills you already have, and learn about those you can develop.