LEADS Resources

  • Research & Evidence-Based Practices - The resources provided here are supported by research and evidence. Topics include assessment, child development, curriculum & instruction, family involvement, inclusion, and transition.
  • Superintendent's memo - This page provides superintendent memos specific to Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Administrators and individuals responsible for administrative oversight of local ECSE programs.
  • Updates - This page provides updates specific to Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Administrators and individuals responsible for administrative oversight of local ECSE programs.
  • Laws & Regulations - This page provides laws and regulations focused on the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). It also provides policy guidance and statements relevant to early childhood special education.
  • State/Federal Organizations - This page provides national and state level initiatives and organizations relevant to early childhood special education.
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Showing Results 1 - 50 of 185
Description: Data are from the December 1, 2017 Child Count unless noted otherwise. Child Count by Age Total Children with Individualized Education Programs Ages 2-5 as of December 1, 2017: 19,224 Total Children with Individualized Education Programs Ages 2-5 as of December 1, 2016: 18,504 (Approximately 3.5% increase)   Total Children with Individualized Education Programs Ages 3-5 as of December 1, 2017: 18,296 Total Children with Individualized Education Programs Age 2 as of December 1,...
Description: Scientists and parents know that young children’s brain development is critically important—and researchers learn more every day. Children experience their most profound cognitive, social, and emotional growth in the first eight years of life. Children’s Institute has put together a series to share educational resources and the latest news from experts about young children’s growing brains and how their caregivers can support and nurture this growth. In this series,...
Description: A four decade look at the Section 619 Preschool Program shows a significant increase in children served.  Part B, Section 619 of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is intended to help ensure that all eligible preschool children with disabilities, aged 3-5 years, receive special education and related services. This growth/comparison chart shows the federal appropriations allocated for Part B Section 619, the number of children served, and the federal dollars allocated per...
Description: This guidance document is designed to assist Virginia’s school divisions and early childhood communities in identifying, developing, and sustaining inclusive opportunities within high-quality early childhood programs for children with disabilities.
Description: Families are the enduring presence in the lives of young children with disabilities. This volume contains activities to support early care and education staff and families in developing positive relationships that support collaboration and family leadership. Session 1: Creating Bright Futures (Building Relationships with Families) Session 2: Listening to Families Session 3: When Concerns Arise: Learning from Families' Experiences Session 4: Getting...
Description: Indicator 6 Instructions: ECSE Settings for Children Birth-Five provides definitions to key vocabulary as well as steps for determining the accurate educational environment classification using the Indicator 6 Decision Tree.  
Description: Indicator 6: Questions and Answers for Educational Environments and Children Birth-Five provides answers to frequently asked questions regarding Indicator 6. It is designed to assist Local Education Agency personnel in accurately collecting and reporting Indicator 6 data.
Description: Three webinars on Indicator 6 provide information on reporting requirements for Early Childhood Special Education Settings for Special Education Administrators, Preschool Special Education Coordinators, and others responsible for oversight of Early Childhood Special Education programs. Understanding Indicator 6: Early Childhood Special Education Settings for Children Ages Birth-Five provides an overview of the reporting requirements. Understanding the Indicator 6 Terminology: Early Childhood...
Description: Indicator 6 Customized Decision Tree Tool provides an application for determining the accurate educational environment classification. To use, click on “Virginia” then "decision tree" the tool bar. To practice using the tool or to train others, click on Scenarios on the tool bar and then click on Scenario on the dropdown menu in the middle of the screen. This tool was developed by the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center and was demonstrated at the November 14, 2016 LEADS...
Description: The word document "619 Placement Data Division Analysis" provides step-by-step directions on how to analyze Early Childood data related to Child Count and Educational Placement. The excel document "Early Childhood Child Count Indicator 6 Excel Template" is a template divisions can use to gather Early Childhood related to Child Count and Educational Placement.  * These documents were shared at the November 14, 2016 LEADS event in the breakout session "Getting to Know Your Division-Level...
Description: This document provides the Special Education Performance Plan Data Profile Self-Assessment Questions for Indicators 5 & 6: Placement in the Least Restrictive Environment, School-age and Preschool.
Description: VDSS is one of the largest Commonwealth agencies, partnering with 120 local departments of social services, along with faith-based and non-profit organizations, to promote the well-being of children and families statewide. We proudly serve alongside 1,650 (state) and 8,500 (local) human services professionals throughout the Social Services System, who ensure that thousands of Virginia's most vulnerable citizens have access to the best services and benefits available to them.
Description: On January 25, 2018, the Board of Education approved the proposed Guidelines for the Prevention of Suspension and Expulsion of Young Children:  Supporting Children with Challenging Behaviors in Early Childhood Settings. The Department of Education has posted links to the Guidelines for the Prevention of Suspension and Expulsion of Young Children: Supporting Children with Challenging Behaviors in Early Childhood Settings on the Division of Instruction's Early Childhood webpage.The primary...
Description: The Communities of Learning (CoL) will deliver targeted technical assistance and professional development to leaders in early childhood education programs. The online CoL will focus on building and maintaining high-quality early childhood inclusive programs. Specifically, participants will: Describe factors that lead to high-quality inclusive preschool programs; Discuss key challenges to implementing inclusive programs; Describe successful division and program strategies, including service...
Description: December 7, 2017: Preschoolers' Self-Regulation and Challenging Behaviors: What We Must Know November 2, 2017: Do's and Don'ts of Using Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Data October 5, 2017: Early Literacy: Fact or Fiction September 7, 2017: 3 Things You Can Do to Start the Year off Right in PreK And more....
Description: Supporting transitions can have positive effects on children and families, and collaboration is key to effective transition. Each brief in this series focuses on a different partnership level: the child and family, early educators, early care and education (ECE) programs, and ECE partners. The Head Start Program Performance Standards outline transition requirements in 1302 Suppart G- Transition Services. Supporting Transitions: Using Child Development as a Guide Supporting Transitions: Early...
Description: In almost every early care and education (ECE) program across the country, there are children who have experienced trauma or who will, during their early childhood, experience traumatic events. Trauma in early childhood takes many forms, including abuse or neglect, witnessing violence, and having prolonged separation from or loss of a parent. An extensive body of research has documented the negative impacts of trauma on young children’s behavior, learning, and other long-term school- and...
Description: Virginia Family Special Education Connection provides a one-stop-shop for parents, families and caregivers of children with special needs to: Access local school system contacts and disability services in your community Explore an abundance of resources, including assistive technology and behavioral supports to help your child succeed. Learn about and plan your child's educational program Understand your legal rights and responsibilities POWER (Parent Organizer with Educational Resources)...
Description: Background and Purpose The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) requires states to report state-level and division-level data on the performance of students with disabilities on several indicators. The IDEA also requires reports on progress toward meeting state targets, as described in the state’s Special Education State Performance Plan.  Virginia did not meet the targets set for Least Restrictive Environment (LRE) placement.  Review of school divisions’ LRE...
Description: What you do and say matters! Explore and practice everyday strategies to develop Positive Goal-Oriented Relationships with a family. These relationships are key to our work with children and families, including the journey toward school readiness. Simulation 1 allows you to practice building bonds with families, beginning with an intake visit. Simulation 2 explores the process of developing and implementing goals with families. Simulation 3 explores using strengths-based attitudes to partner...
Description: FPG's Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center and the National Center on Early Development, Teaching, and Learning partnered to host "Collaboration with Families and Other Partners: Essential Features of High Quality Inclusion." This webinar is the third in a series focusing on questions that frequently arise when local early childhood programs collaborate to increase opportunities for high-quality inclusion.
Description: This document provides a variety of resources for supporting young children in immigrant families.  Resources within Reason is a free, one-way listserv provided by the Division for Early Childhood of the Council for Exceptional Children (DEC). All resources are evidence-based, readily available and free. Resources within Reason may be freely shared or reproduced. Past issues may be accessed at http://www.dec-sped.org/resources-within-reason  Want to receive the istserv directly?...
Description: Reflecting the 2017 National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute's theme of Trusting Partnerships in a Time of Change, leaders from federal agencies and national early childhood professional organizations shared information and insights on early childhood directions and initiatives related to inclusion and to supporting children with disabilities and their families. Participants also asked questions and shared their perspectives with the panelists. FPG's Pamela Winton,...
Description: This site houses the VA Early Intervention Certification Coures and Ongoing Professional Development Courses.
Description: The Virginia Project for Children and Young Adults with DeafBlindness (VDBP) will host a special session of modules to help teams of at least one classroom teacher and one paraprofessional or teacher's aide to complete 20 hours of training using modules 1-3. Teachers of the deaf and hard of hearing, teachers of students with visual impairments, related service providers, etc. are also encouraged to apply. The “host” will be available to answer questions, support understanding of...
Description: NAEYC compiled these online resources for parents, teachers, and others working with young children about coping with violence and talking with young children about tragedies. Fred Rogers: "Tragic Events" Read timeless wisdom on what to keep in mind when talking to young children about a tragedy from Fred Rogers for parents, teachers, and caregivers. Also see a photo and video clip. From the Today Show: Talking to Children About the Marathon BombingsPsychiatrist Gail Saltz offeres tips on...
Description: NAEYC culled excerpts and articles from their publications and online content about anti-bias approraches, strategies to counter bullying, ways to guide children's behavior, build positive classroom communitites, and support the range of diverse children and families in EC programs.  Resources are listed below Anti-Bias Education: Now online you can read the first chapter of the book Anti-Bias Education for Young Children and Ourselves and find self-reflection exercises for...
Description: This report published by Child Trends and the National Center for Children in Poverty in April 2017 describes early childhood trauma and its effects, provides promising strategies for ECE programs and systems to help young children who have experienced trauma, and offers recommendations for state policymakers and other stakeholders looking to support trauma-informed ECE for this vulnerable group.
Description: The Child Outcomes Summary Process: Procedures Specific to Virginia webinar provides guidance from the Virginia Department of Education to school divisions to complete the Child Outcomes Summary (COS) process, a team process for summarizing information related to a child’s progress on each of the three child outcome areas for Indicator 7 (i.e. the percentage of preschool children with Individualized Education Programs who demonstrate improved a) positive social-emotional skills, b)...
Description: This document, created in July, 2017 is an ECTA Center resource based on the Joint Policy Statement on Inclusion of Children with Disabilities in Early Childhood Programs. It is a tool for States to use in developing policy/guidance in order to implement high-quality inclusive practices across early care and education programs.
Description: This document is a July, 2017 update of ECTA Center's resource that addresses updated guidance in the Dear Colleague Letter on Preschool Least Restrictive Environments published in January, 2017. Worksheets included in this toolkit: Early Childhood Progams Comparison Worksheet Determining Costs Inclusive Worksheet
Description: This online tool was adapted by the ECTA and DaSy Centers in May, 2017 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Education's Policy Statement on Inclusion of Children with Disabilities in Early Childhood Programs.
Description: This webpage hosted by ECTA, provides a variety of webinars on inclusion: Webinar: Preparing a High-Quality Workforce to Support Inclusion in Early Childhood Programs - September 7, 2016 2:00 to 3:00 ET 2015-2016 Inclusion of Young Children with Disabilities Webinar Series Kickoff: Inclusion in Early Childhood Programs (February 11, 2016) Preschool Inclusion: What's the Evidence, What Gets in the Way, and What do High-Quality Programs Look Like? (February 18, 2016) Early...
Description: This CEELO blog post refers to the early childhood provisions in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) that enable districts to improve early learning for all children, including young children with disabilities. 
Description: This handout created by the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University is designed specifically for practitioners to use with parents and caregivers, reinforces the importance of "serve and return" interactions to children's healthy development and breaks them down into five easy steps developed by the Filming Interactions to Nurture Development (FIND). View and download the tool 
Description: This website is the Virginia Subdivision of The Division for Early Childhood (DEC) which exists to promote policies and advance evidence-based practices that support families and enhance the optimal development of young children (0-8) who have or are at risk for developmental delays and disabilities. DEC is an international membership organization for those who work with or on behalf of young children (0-8) with disabilities and other special needs and their families.
Description: The report begins with a concise description of the prekindergarten landscape in America today, authored by Ajay Chaudry and Rupa Ditta. A core group consisting of the four organizers (Dodge, Haskins, Lipsey, and Phillips) and five others (Daphna Bassok, Greg Duncan, Mark Dynarski, Katherine Magnuson, and Chris Weiland) took in all available information, reached consensus on the six major conclusions that form the basis for this report, and drafted the Consensus Statement summarizing the major...
Description: A new technical assistance report, Braiding, Blending, and Layering Funding Sources to Increase Access to Quality Preschool (2017), discusses a number of strategies for braiding, blending or layering various funding sources to provide comprehensive, inclusive early learning programs for young children and their families. It includes interviews with local school district, Head Start, and child care administrators discussing how they are making it work in their programs.
Description: The Topics covered in this Webinar (presented on May 25, 2017): What is Web Accessibility? What are Some Common Accessibility Errors? What is WCAG 2.0?  How does it differ from 1.0? How can I Evaluate and Correct Accessibility Errors on my Website? How can I Create Accessible Content for new Webpages?
Description: IDEA requires states to report state-level and division-level indicator data on the performance of students with disabilities. Indicator 7: Preschool Outcomes focuses on the improved performance of preschool children with disabilities.  Specifically, states are required to report the percent of children with IEPs who demonstrate improved a) positive social-emotional skills (including social relationships); b) acquisition and use of knowledge and skills (including early language/...
Description: The outcomes address three areas of child functioning necessary for each child to be an active and successful participant at home, in early care and education settings, and in the community.  Positive social-emotional skills refer to how children get along with others, how they relate with adults and with other children. The outcome includes the ways the child expresses emotions and feelings and how he or she interacts with and plays with other children. For toddlers and preschoolers, these...
Description: This collection of resources provides presentations and information about young children’s development and age appropriate skills. Understanding Age Expectations: Birth to 3 – A guide for Virginia’s Early Childhood Special Educators is a module that reviews typical development for children ages birth to three, connects the user to developmental milestone resources, and offers activities to increase the user’s understanding of the developmental progression of skills...
Description: Local Education Agencies (LEAs) must report the percentage of preschool children with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) who demonstrate improved: Positive social-emotional skills (including social relationships), Acquisition and use of knowledge and skills (including early language/communication and early literacy), and Use of appropriate behavior to meet needs. States are required to measure and report on the progress children make between the time they enter a program and the time they...
Description: The LEADS-ECSE Program Administrator Spring Institute provides support to school division leaders in the implementation of programs for preschool children with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) and the collection, reporting, and use of ECSE Indicator data.  The Spring Institute will focus on Indicator 7, Preschool Outcomes.  Specifically, participants will increase knowledge and skills about: Recommendations for developing and refining a consistent process to collect preschool...
Description: Understanding Age Expectations: Two to Five – A guide for Virginia’s Early Childhood Special Educators is a module that reviews typical development for children ages two to five, connects the user to developmental milestone resources, and offers activities to increase the user’s understanding of the developmental progression of skills while connecting them to the Indicator 7 outcomes. This module can be viewed by an individual to learn more about development of children two to...
Description: Understanding Age Expectations: Birth to 3 – A guide for Virginia’s Early Childhood Special Educators is a module that reviews typical development for children ages birth to three, connects the user to developmental milestone resources, and offers activities to increase the user’s understanding of the developmental progression of skills while connecting them to the Indicator 7 outcomes. This module can be viewed by an individual to learn more about development of children birth...
Description: Policymakers at both the federal and state levels are calling for increased investments in public pre-k programs, along with the requirement to evaluate these services. In response to these needs, FPG has established the National Pre-K and Early Learning Evaluation Center which is designed to help states design, implement, and evaluate pre-k and early learning programs. The National Pre-K and Early Learning Evaluation Center provides: Assistance with designing and implementing...
Description: This document provides answers to frequently asked questions related to the transition from Part C to Part B. Updated February 2017.
Description: This document provides technical assistance related to the transition from Part C to Part B and includes essential regulations as well as information regarding reporting Indicator 12. The flowchart provides an overivew of the transition from Part C to Part B.  
Description: The Social Emotional Preschool Curriculum Consumer Report provides information and guidance for Head Start programs as they select curricula based on the strengths and needs of their participating children and teachers. The curricula reviewed in this report were rated for their implementation in center-based programs, and each includes elements designed to strengthen the teaching and learning of children’s social emotional and approaches to learning skills. This report is intended to...