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Strengths and Challenges of Service Coordination in Eight States

Childress, Dana C., PhD; Nichols, Sarah, BA; Schnurr, Melissa, PhD

doi: 10.1097/IYC.0000000000000140
Original Research/Study
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A survey was distributed in 8 states to learn about perceived strengths and challenges of service coordination from those working in early intervention (EI) programs under Part C of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Survey responses from 769 service coordinators and other EI personnel in 8 states provide an overview of state systems and the implementation of service coordination activities within these state EI systems. Respondents suggested that service coordinators experience the following needs: (1) balancing the workload by reducing the number of families served per service coordinator and decreasing the amount of paperwork; (2) improved compensation and funding; and (3) better and more frequent training opportunities. Findings from this survey were analyzed and used by representatives from participating states to determine state and national action plans for improving the professional development and identity of service coordinators, with the goal of prioritizing support for this important part of the early childhood intervention workforce.

Partnership for People with Disabilities, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond (Dr Childress); Early Intervention Training Program at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (Ms Nichols); and Iowa Department of Education, Des Moines (Dr Schnurr).

Correspondence: Dana C. Childress, PhD, Partnership for People with Disabilities, Virginia Commonwealth University, 508 Ferrum Ln, Chesapeake, VA 23322 (dcchildress@vcu.edu).

The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest, including financial, institutional, or other relationships that might lead to bias or conflict.

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