Early Intervention Special Instructors and Service Coordinators in One State: Characteristics, Professional Development, and Needed Lines of Inquiry

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Abstract

The success of Early Intervention (EI) programs (Part C, IDEA [Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act of 2004]) for infants and toddlers with special needs (birth to 36 months) is largely influenced by the quality of direct service providers. Little is known, however, about characteristics of providers or involvement in training initiatives to inform practice. As a rare glimpse into a state's EI personnel system, the authors examined cross-sectional information from a Professional Development database in one state's home-based Part C program. Trainees (N = 425) included primarily those who were in a sole or combined position as special instructor and/or service coordinator. Key insights and needed lines of inquiry to inform national Part C professional development initiatives are discussed.

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