In the inaugural issue of Infants and Young Children published in 1988, founding editor Jim Blackman expressed the hope that the birth of this new journal was a welcome event. Indeed it was, as IYC has become an absolutely vital source of information for those seeking to provide supports and services to vulnerable young children and their families.
There is much to be said for developmental continuity when development is going well, as has been the case for IYC during these past 15 years. As the new Editor, there are a few (nonturbulent) changes that I am considering during IYC's now adolescent period. However, the emphasis on interdisciplinary practices, bridging research and practice, presenting challenging but balanced perspectives of controversial issues, and ensuring that our readership is aware of new directions, innovative practices, model programs, and creative ideas will certainly remain the focus of IYC. From a broader perspective, I hope to be able to continue to effectively link to practice and policy issues the extensive knowledge emerging from the developmental science of normative development, the developmental science of risk and disability, and intervention science relevant to the field of early childhood development.
The new Editorial Board has been substantially expanded to ensure that no key issue in our field goes undetected. Keeping adequately informed of the remarkable advances in so many domains relevant to vulnerable children and their families requires the active participation of such a diverse and accomplished group as that listed on the masthead. This Board has already contributed their talents in so many ways to the journal during the transition to my editorship, and I look forward to their continuing contributions to the development and selection of articles and to their advice on many matters. I encourage the general readership as well to let me know how the journal can meet your needs most effectively.
Also, as indicated on the masthead, IYC is now being published in association with the International Society on Early Intervention (ISEI). Jim Blackman has been active over the years in international issues, and I plan to continue that tradition. The link with ISEI is one important mechanism to expand communication about early intervention issues worldwide. In fact, some IYC articles will be placed on the ISEI website to create an internet discussion group with an international perspective. As such, a mechanism will be available to enable ideas to be exchanged among ISEI members and with the authors. For information about ISEI, please visit the website: http://depts.washington.edu/isei/.
In this issue of IYC, a number of important topics are considered. So called “parent training” in early intervention has had a checkered history, some seeing it as a vital component of support to families, others as a professionally driven exercise in paternalism. Fortunately, reconciliation of these different perceptions has been emerging in recent years, as parent training programs have been placed in more naturalistic contexts with nondirective techniques all carried out in partnership with families. A better recognition of the role of parent training in a developmental context, including parents' theories regarding their child's development, has helped to promote agreeable and effective practices. As seen, this issue contains a number of articles focusing on this and related concerns of parents.
Other articles address important topics as well. First, the seemingly never-ending quest to integrate services at all levels is considered. Important information is provided to move us ahead in this vital process. Second, the role of child temperament or behavioral style is also discussed in connection with children with developmental disabilities. We now know a great deal about how to use information about temperament to enhance and focus early intervention services. Third, the complex issue of self-determination is examined in the context of early childhood intervention and is seen as an important framework to guide practice. Finally, an important update of the medical problems of children with Down syndrome is presented as this information is critical for all early intervention professionals.