Technical Assistance (TA) and Dissemination
A four-tiered TA delivery model has been designed to meet the identified needs of relevant stakeholders in New York State. This model takes into account the varied needs of each constituent and capitalizes on a system that matches the needs and wishes of the stakeholder with the appropriate level of technical assistance that they will receive from the project.
NYDBC Multitiered TA Delivery Model
The model comprises four levels of TA delivery and is intended to address most stakeholders at levels 1 and 2. As the levels of intensity increase (levels 3 and 4), the number of TA recipients is reduced. Levels 1 and 2 will capture increased levels of knowledge and skills and attitudes and beliefs in practice. As the levels intensify in Levels 3 and 4, implementation of skills and increased observable and measurable child-specific data is captured.
Level 1: Information Dissemination
This level covers the dissemination of information based on evidence-based practice in the field of deaf-blindness. Examples are fact sheets, web resources, research articles, and instructional materials. This is typically the first level of contact that stakeholders have with the project, which may lead to a more intense level of TA based on the needs and wishes of each constituent.
Level 2: Distance Learning
NYDBC is establishing a number of options for distance learning that include the delivery of content in the area of deaf-blindness, as well as opportunities for collaboration across the state through social networking platforms moderated by NYDBC staff. Distance learning will allow people to develop professional relationships that will support their professional development in the area of deaf-blindness, regardless of geography. The project also intends to offer a limited number of stipends to professionals across New York State to participate in a graduate-level distance education course through Hunter College. This opportunity will be offered to professionals who are involved at the two more intense levels of technical assistance (see below).
Level 3: On-Site Coaching
In collaboration with NYDBC staff, professionals will be guided through a process that will assist them in identifying programmatic and instructional needs, goals to be achieved, and methods for doing so. NYDBC staff will spend time on-site with staff engaged in training activities and the modeling of effective techniques to have a direct impact on the services and instruction for children and youth who are deaf-blind.
Level 4: Transdisciplinary Team Intervention
This most intense level of technical assistance can be delivered in two main ways. The first is through focusing on the school or regional level (such as a BOCES) to develop a transdisciplinary team and program with the intention of delivering quality services to individuals who are deaf-blind within that program. The second delivery method can be centered on an individual, and the team that serves him/her, as he/she transitions between service delivery systems (EI to preschool, preschool to school-age, or school to adult life).
Training and Professional Development
While integrated into the technical assistance model, training and professional development will be delivered in a number of ways:
- Online learning through this website for general dissemination, as well as through a platform for more topic-specific training integrated with online collaboration and social networking that will build knowledge as well as networks of support for both professionals and families.
- In-service training/professional development to programs serving children who are deaf-blind, based on results from stakeholder needs assessments of staff within the program.
- Pre-service training through Hunter College in the form of tuition reimbursement for a graduate course in deaf-blindness, as well as through the sharing of training materials with interested teacher training programs through the New York State Higher Education Network.
Child Find and Identification
NYDBC is required to maintain a census of all children and youth who are deaf-blind in New York State. To improve child-find, and early identification in particular, the project is taking a number of steps to increase its child-find activities. These steps include developing materials to raise awareness within the medical community, conducting a comprehensive outreach to all public and private educational agencies in New York State, and reaching out to families through pre-existing parent and referral organizations. Registry Form
Capacity Building and Systems Change
Two opportunities for capacity building and systems change have been identified; additional opportunities will be identified through the technical assistance process. NYDBC will be engaged in a family leadership training project with the National Consortium on Deaf-Blindness for families of children who are deaf-blind, as well as supporting the development of the New York Parent Network, the statewide network for parents of deaf-blind children. Second, the project will be engaged in building awareness and knowledge around the use of interveners (1-to-1 aides) for children and youth who are deaf-blind.
NYDBC will develop products that arise out of the technical assistance process. Through the multitiered TA delivery model, NYDBC will discover areas that are lacking existing products on topics, which would benefit stakeholders throughout New York State.