Category: Uncategorized

Zika Facts – An Updated Overview

September 22, 2016

When a family asks you about Zika prevention as they plan a trip to an affected area, what do you say? Here is a quick overview of what is currently known about the Zika virus, the  exposure effects on prenatal development and adults, and how to arm yourself with knowledge – and mosquito repellant!

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It’s Flu Season – CDC update and guidance

September 19, 2016

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued new guidance for the 2016 flu season. This season’s vaccines have been updated to better match more recently circulating influenza viruses. CDC recommends that everyone aged 6 months or older receive an influenza vaccine every year, by the end of October if possible. However, CDC continues to recommend that influenza vaccination efforts continue as long as influenza viruses are circulating in the community. Significant seasonal influenza virus activity can continue into May, so vaccination later in the season can still provide benefit during most seasons. One big change for the … Continue reading

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Evaluations and Screenings – OSEP’s View

September 7, 2016

A  policy letter was recently issued from the Office of Special Education Programs at the U.S. Department of Education to a parent that clarifies screenings, multidisciplinary evaluations and eligibility. For the details on who, what, when and how, click here.

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A Doctor’s View on Supporting Families

September 7, 2016

Does this sound familiar??  Families do not always agree with research-based recommendations.  We do our best to reach common ground and move forward together. Physicians Struggle with Ethics of Barring Families who do not follow immunization schedule “We as pediatricians do so much more than immunize…We teach, we advocate, we role model, and even when parents say no to immunization the first 10 times we bring it up, we bring it up an 11th and 12th time.” Kenneth Alexander, MD, PhD* and Thomas A. Lacy, MD** say the small risk to vulnerable [immune-compromised] children is outweighed by the benefits families get from … Continue reading

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The Faces of Birth to Three

September 1, 2016

Whose faces do you picture when you think of “Birth to Three families”?    😛  😯    😆 I’m asking for your help with collecting photos of real people who receive early intervention supports.  Please ask a few families of your choice to send me one or more photos that tell their story.  If their photo is selected, I will ask for their consent to use it  for Public Awareness purposes, including the FY16 annual report to the Governor and legislature. Preferred photos:  child with family member(s), activity based, good lighting and clarity of images, high-resolution digital preferred      NO professional portraits please Send photo files/prints to: with “Faces of B23” in the subject … Continue reading

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ECCS Action Plan – Your Input Wanted

May 16, 2016

The Connecticut Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS) planning grant has supported the Office of Early Childhood and the United Way of CT to develop a comprehensive plan for improving Connecticut’s developmental monitoring and screening and linkage to services.  ECCS needs to know if the Action Plan will meet this goal in a way that works for families, communities and Early Care and Education (ECE) programs.  (click here for a concise summary)   You may have participated in the 2014-15 Needs Assessment that led to the current Action Plan.   Now we want your feedback to help shape the process further. Please take 5 – 10 minutes to complete this  Early Childhood Stakeholder Survey by … Continue reading

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Notice changes on our website?

May 10, 2016

Every time WordPress updates something changes! This time, we lost the calendar plug-in.   To get it back we needed a quick redesign.  Jesse at the United Way of CT came to the rescue and now the site has a calendar again and the site is finally RESPONSIVE.  This basically means that the site layout will change based on the screen size.  On your phone you’ll need to scroll down to see the left menu options and the top tabs will be in a drop down menu at the top (but it’s a long list!) The one thing that isn’t responsive … Continue reading

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Infant Mental Health Collaborative meetings

May 9, 2016

Join your colleagues at various locations around the state on May 18, June 9, 20, 27 or 28 to: Promote awareness of infant mental health Promote use of relationship-based practices throughout infant/early childhood communities Expand skills, knowledge & best practice in field of infant mental health Identify gaps/needs in programs & communities related to infant mental health Advance knowledge of the competencies & endorsement in infant mental health Identify & explore opportunities for collaborative training & reflective supervision This is for EVERYONE serving infants, toddlers/very young children and their families!!! For times, locations and to RSVP:  contact Anne Giordano   860-567-0863 X236

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Your Voice Needed – ECCS Community Discussions

May 4, 2016

The OEC and United Way Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems (ECCS) group is hosting four community discussions on how to increase Connecticut’s ability to detect and address developmental challenges and delays in children aged 0-5 through developmental promotion, monitoring and screening, and supporting linkage to follow up services when there are developmental concerns. We want YOUR input on the ECCS work and Action Plan. Audience: ECE and family child care providers, Early Childhood community members and stakeholders, families, Birth to Three providers   Format: Open forum setting with a guided presentation, Q & A, and brief opinion survey When and Where: Monday, May 9, 3:00-4:30 PM: Energize … Continue reading

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Play!! Diane Levin lecture May 4th at Yale

April 29, 2016

It’s not too late!  Come to Yale and hear Diane Levin speak about Endangered Play, Endangered Development Why Play is Even More Important in the 21st Century Diane Levin May 4, 2016           6:30 – 8:30 pm Yale School of Management FREE and Open to the Public Visit the Gesell Institute website for information on all 65th Anniversary activities.  

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HMG Networking Breakfast schedule

February 25, 2016

The Office of Early Childhood Family Support Services Division is pleased to share the 2016 calendar of Help Me Grow Networking Breakfasts. Help Me Grow program staff regularly host community networking breakfasts that bring together service providers to identify gaps and barriers in service,  share information, learn about new initiatives and develop solutions to challenging family issues. Join a breakfast near you!

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Together We Will – Stipends For Parents

February 18, 2016

The 23 rd Annual Together We Will Conference on April 6, 2016 is offering stipends to parents who would like to attend.  Please use the following forms to request a stipend: 2016 TWW Family – eng       2016 TWW Family – span     Find more information on the conference on

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New DEC Recommended Practices Videos

February 11, 2016

A new video about the DEC Recommended Practices was recently posted here  Mary McLean, the chair of the DEC Recommended Practices Commission, offers an overview of the 2014 Recommended Practices in the top video and if you scroll down you’ll see another short video about, “Evidence Syntheses of the DEC Recommended Practices.”

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Draft APR Available for Review

December 29, 2015

Each year, progress on Connecticut’s Birth to Three State Performance Plan or SPP is reported to the US Dept. of Education Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) in an Annual Performance Report (APR). Each APR is developed with broad stakeholder input. This is a draft of the APR that is due to OSEP by February 1, 2016 based on the 2014-2015 fiscal year.  If you have any questions or comments about the content, please email by January 15th.  (The formatting is set by the GRADS360 online submission tool.) To get to the APR page on click the Home tab and on the … Continue reading

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Translation & Interpretation Services

December 10, 2015

Looking for translation of a family’s IFSP into Farsi? The State of Connecticut Contract # 14PSX0152 lists twenty vendors who can provide document translation and/or face-to-face interpretation. Anyone may contact these agencies to purchase their services.  If your agency receives 60% or more of your funding from a combination of state and federal sources, you may purchase their services at the contracted rates (which are often lower than those offered to the public).  Agencies differ in their rates per language, and in the languages they can provide. Go to to see how these vendors may support your effective communications … Continue reading

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Honoring Military Families – access to resources

November 5, 2015

November is the Month of the Military Family.  Mili­tary families embody strength, resilience, and courage.  They make tremendous sacrifices as they contend with separation from their families and  adjustments to new living situations and communi­ties. The National Child Traumatic Stress Network has a number of excellent resources, webinars, and links to partner organizations to support the well-being of our nation’s military families. Please share this link with your active and retired military families, with our thanks! Visit>>

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Meet Sesame Street’s First Character with Autism!

October 23, 2015

“Fuzzy favorites Grover, Abby and Elmo are joined by their newest muppet pal, Julia, a character with autism, in Sesame Street Workshop‘s new nationwide initiative. Launched Wednesday morning, Sesame Street and Autism: See Amazing in All Children aims to reduce “the stigma of autism” with the introduction of the first muppet with autism.  The initiative, created for communities and families with children ages 2 to 5, includes a free downloadable app that incorporates video, digital story cards designed to make daily life tasks easier for families of children with autism and storybook materials for providers, organizations and caregivers. ” (article found … Continue reading

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ED Launches a New Early Learning Webpage

September 28, 2015

Visit ED’s updated early learning webpage where you can learn about the Department’s early learning work. The webpage will make it easier for the public to learn about ED’s key early learning activities; initiatives and programs; ED’s interagency early learning work; the latest from ED’s technical assistance centers and research projects; and resources for families.   Please share the link to the webpage widely!  

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Check Out This NEW COS Online Module!

May 15, 2015

Source: Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center and the Center for IDEA Early Childhood Data Systems – May 15, 2015 This new free online module draws from the work of the Early Childhood Outcomes Center and is designed to help early intervention and preschool special education staff understand the Child Outcomes Summary (COS) process. It provides key information on the process and practices that contribute to consistent and meaningful COS decision-making. The first three sessions are available for use now and are meant to provide a basic understanding of the COS process. They include: Session 1: So What’s This All About? … Continue reading

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SSIP Phase I Final Draft available

March 2, 2015

The final draft of Phase I of  Connecticut’s State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP) is online for review. Click here to view the final daft of Phase I approved at the stakeholder meeting. Please contact with any questions or suggested edits no later than March 16th, 2015 This is a sample of what the report will look like once it is entered into the online system called GRADS360. To learn more about the SSIP and how Connecticut’s stakeholders got to this point, please visit the SSIP webpage at also available via the Home page menus on the left under … Continue reading

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