Opportunities for Families
Did you know that there are many ways for families to be involved in the Early Intervention system beyond the services your child receives? Family participation has long been the cornerstone of the Massachusetts Early Intervention system and parents have been instrumental in advising policy-makers, as well as helping to determine the future direction of Early Intervention services.
The Parent Leadership Project is pleased to offer a road map of opportunities for parent involvement in the Early Intervention system.
The Parent Leadership Project actively supports family participation by offering resources and training. For more information on these or other opportunities, please call the Parent Leadership Project toll-free at (877) 35-EI-PLP.
Parent Leadership Roles/Family Involvement Activities
Leadership Role Level of Impact Compensation Commitment Current Transitioned
|Parent Contact||Local Early Intervention Program, Regional & Statewide||Volunteer, but are eligible to attend the EI Conference for free||Depends on the individual||Yes||No|
|Parent Advisory Council (PAC) Member||Local Early Intervention, Regional||Volunteer, but high in satisfaction||Depends on the individual||Yes||Yes|
|Parent/Family Liaison||Local Early Intervention Program||Salaried early intervention staff position||Depends on the early intervention program||Possibly (depends on the EI program)||Yes|
|ICC Parent Representative||Regional, Statewide and National||Reimbursement||4-5 meetings and conference calls per year with some prep time||Yes||Yes|
|Early Intervention Training Center Parent Presenter||Regional||Reimbursement||6 hours per presentation with some prep time (training is available)||Yes||Yes|
|ICC Committee Member||Statewide||Reimbursement||Approximately 2 hours per meeting per month (mentoring is available)||Yes||Yes|
|Early Intervention Program Focused Monitoring Parent Team Member||Regional||Reimbursement||Approximately 4 days onsite per visit with some prep time. (Training provided)||No||Yes|
|Advisor to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health||Statewide||Flat rate reimbursement||Short term, project based (Training is available)||Yes||Yes|
|For more information: The Early Intervention Parent Leadership Project 1-877-35-EI-PLP|
Parent Contact: A parent whose child is currently receiving services from an early intervention program. This parent volunteers to work with the Parent Leadership Project to receive information and share it with other families and staff in their early intervention program. The Parent Contact also shares program news and family involvement activities with the Parent Leadership Project. Parent Contacts are vital links in the information chain as the information is then shared with other families through the statewide newsletter, the Parent Perspective.
PAC (Parent Advisory Council) Member: A parent who joins the PAC at their early intervention program and meets with other family members to look at issues that affect more than just their own child. If there is no formal PAC at your early intervention program, ask your program director for ways that you can make an individual contribution to your program’s policies, procedures, or other special activities.
Parent or Family Liaison: A parent of a child that is currently enrolled or a graduate of a certified Early intervention program that is hired by the program to bring the parent perspective to the staff. This position varies within programs and within regions.
Interagency Coordinating Council (ICC) Parent Representative: There are seven parent representatives who are members of the ICC, one parent for each region of the state and an at-large representative. The parent members are appointed to represent parents and their perspectives about early intervention policies and procedures.
Early Intervention Training Center Parent Co-Presenter: Families are invited to join the EI Training Center staff and share their experiences. This is a great way to take an active role in the training that early intervention providers receive. Parent presenters are reimbursed for their time and travel.
Interagency Coordinating Council (ICC) Committee Member: Any parent, whether or not he or she is an ICC member, may choose to join a committee or task group. We encourage family participation on all committees in order to keep the committee and it’s members family-centered. Family members that attend committee meetings on a regular basis receive reimbursement for their participation.
Early Intervention Focused Monitoring Parent Team Member: A parent team member works collaboratively with a DPH Regional Specialist as part of a focused monitoring team to visit and evaluate EI programs. The team looks at key indicators of performance to determine whether EI programs are performing as required. Responsibilities include pre-visit and debriefing meetings, facilitating activities at the onsite visit, compiling notes and contributing to a final report submitted by the team. Parents will receive training and compensation for their time. This opportunity is open to parents whose children are graduates of a certified Early Intervention program.
Early Intervention Training Center Workshops: Families who receive early intervention services are invited to attend the EI Training Center workshops.
Advisor to the Massachusetts Department of Public Health: A parent of a child that is currently enrolled or a graduate of a certified Early intervention program that trained to review proposals from a parent’s point of view, participate on a task force; provide input at a focus group or through a survey, etc.