Breaking Up Is Hard To Do
So, I’m at the office and I can’t help but overhear a Service Coordinator on the phone with an early intervention provider making the call – you know, the break up call. She tried everything to soften the news – scheduling conflict, goodness of fit, it’s not you, the family thinks …

Maybe the family was referred to your program by the court system. Maybe the mother made the referral because a grandparent was pressuring her. Maybe the doctor made the referral even though the father wasn’t really interested.

Whatever the reason, there are some families who enroll in early intervention but who really don’t want to be there.  Accepting early intervention …

The tension builds as you sit in the IFSP meeting…
The discussion began as a celebration of the child’s progress but gradually becomes more tense as the child’s IFSP outcomes are reviewed. As each outcome is discussed, the speech therapist feels that the child has met it but the mother disagrees. She says that the child talks more during the therapy sessions …

You’re sitting in an IFSP meeting discussing outcomes that the family would like to see for the child. The child is eligible for early intervention (EI)  due to global developmental delays as well as cerebral palsy. The IFSP outcomes include the child learning to move about independently, feed himself, and learn to ask for what he wants, like …

A new student walks into your office and sits down on the first day of her practicum. You begin your orientation about your program, starting with an overview of early intervention. You start by discussing Part C of IDEA and about halfway through your explanation, the student politely interrupts and asks…”What’s Part C again?” Yikes.

If you are student …

A strong, comfortable, and trusting partnership between the service coordinator and the service provider is so important for a cohesive early intervention system. Without it, you have IFSP services ending without IFSP reviews or outcomes being “met” but not indicated on the plan. You have frustrated team members who feel that families are not getting the support they …

Early interventionists know service coordinators wear several hats. We are advocators, coordinators, problem solvers, and mediators.   Service coordinators are leaders in the IFSP process and active listeners to parents and providers.   We have to be creative and sometimes think outside the box to help children reach their greatest potential.

Service coordination has many rewards and challenges …