FPG's Technical Assistance (TA) Division is dedicated to building system capacity to implement evidence-based practices (EBPs) and, ultimately, ensure optimal outcomes, for the most vulnerable young children--including those with, or at risk for, disabilities, who have experienced trauma, and who live in poverty--and their families. Technical assistance is a collaborative and coordinated approach to facilitating change that focuses on building the capacity of individuals, organizations, and systems, and ultimately, achieving agreed-upon outcomes.
The Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA) supports Part C and Section 619 coordinators and staff to implement high-quality EI/ECSE systems and increase implementation of evidence-based practices (EBPs) to improve outcomes for children with disabilities and their families. The Center focuses on building leadership capacity of state coordinators and staff to implement IDEA programs and collaborate across broader early childhood; increasing access to high-quality inclusive programs for children with disabilities; and building state and local capacity to implement EBPs.
STEM Innovation for Inclusion in Early Education Center (STEMIE) aims to develop and enhance knowledge of the practices and supports necessary to improve access and participation in STEM for young children with disabilities. STEMIE's expected outcomes include: increased body of knowledge of current EBPs for STEM learning; increased use of STEM EBPs by early childhood programs, providers, and families to promote access and participation for young children with disabilities; increased awareness by faculty in IHEs of STEM learning for young children with disabilities; and increased focus and integration of early STEM EBPs into IHE programs of study.
Equity and inclusion for all young children
FPG technical assistance specialists support efforts to address issues of equity in health and education. We actively work toward creating systems and services that include children at risk for delays and with disabilities in their communities, schools, homes, and other environments.
Positive outcomes for young children and their families
FPG technical assistance specialists focus on building high-quality systems and services that result in positive outcomes for infants, toddlers, and young children at risk of delays or with disabilities and their families. We understand evidence-based practices in early childhood and support administrators, trainers, faculty, teachers, and providers to implement those practices that help children reach their potential.
State and local system capacity
FPG technical assistance specialists understand the essential role of state and local infrastructure for ensuring that high-quality services are delivered to support children and families. Our technical assistance strategies address infrastructure components to ensure that leadership and policies, personnel, funding, standards, accountability, and data systems are aligned.
Translation of research into practice
FPG technical assistance specialists understand and implement effective technical assistance that is based on research and evaluation. We provide differentiated technical assistance that incorporates adult learning principles, systems change principles, implementation science, improvement science, and strategies from evaluation and data-driven decision making.
CONNECT Modules are free resources designed for faculty and professional development providers to support practitioners in becoming confident in including children with disabilities. Each module is focused on a particular research-based practice with an emphasis on inclusive settings and meeting the needs of diverse learners. The modules are designed to build early childhood practitioners’ critical thinking skills. These modules are hosted by the Division for Early Childhood to sustain and ensure the modules can continue to make an impact in the field.
The National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute is a premier educational opportunity for anyone involved in the care and education of young children with special needs in inclusive settings. For 20 years, complete with dozens of world-class experts, dozens of groundbreaking sessions, free courses for CEUs, and an enduring impact, the Inclusion Institute has drawn people from across the country and around the globe. Participants learn about current research findings, models, and resources to guide inclusive policy, professional development, and practice; develop collaborative relationships and cross-agency systems to support early childhood inclusion; and meet, learn from, and problem solve with peers.
Technical Assistance Leadership
Christina Kasprzak, MA, co-leads the Technical Assistance Division and is director of the Trohanis Technical Assistance (TA) Projects at FPG. In addition, Christina currently serves as co-director of the Early Childhood TA (ECTA) Center and is PI on the FPG subcontract for the Center for Early Childhood IDEA Data Systems (DaSy). Christina specializes in program evaluation and has worked for ten years to support the measurement of child and family outcomes in EI/ECSE. She led the development of the ECTA System Framework for Early Intervention and Preschool Special Education, designed to guide state EI/ECSE leaders in evaluating their current systems.
Sherri Britt Williams co-leads the Technical Assistance Division and is the principal investigator and director of the NC Early Intervention Technical Assistance and Professional Development Support (NC EI-TAPS) project and the NC Early Learning Network (NC-ELN) project. She is also a technical assistance specialist for the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center. In addition to managing the NC EI-TAPS and NC-ELN projects, Sherri develops and provides training and professional development support to early childhood professionals and helps state systems implement successful and sustainable initiatives and practices using an implementation science framework.