Family practices within the DEC Recommended Practices encompass three themes:
- Family-centered practices: Practices that treat families with dignity and respect; are individualized, flexible, and responsive to each family’s unique circumstances; provide family members complete and unbiased information to make informed decisions; and involve family members in acting on choices to strengthen child, parent, and family functioning.
- Family capacity-building practices: Practices that include the participatory opportunities and experiences afforded to families to strengthen existing parenting knowledge and skills and promote the development of new parenting abilities that enhance parenting self-efficacy beliefs and practices.
- Family and professional collaboration: Practices that build relationships between families and professionals who work together to achieve mutually agreed upon outcomes and goals that promote family competencies and support the development of the child.
To learn more about the DEC Recommended Practices please visit the following: DEC Recommended Practices direct link (pdf) and DEC Recommended Practices with embedded examples
Look for the training "Family-Centered Practices in EI" on the EITP training calendar for an opportunity to learn more about this topic and earn EI credit!
Getting to Know the Family
- Parent Questionnaire (pdf) - Developed by Megan Carroll, MOT, OTR/L this quick and easy to use checklist helps you learn more about the family.
- Family Considerations (pdf) - This resource is an optional component to the Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP). Service coordinators may choose to complete this worksheet with families or give it to families to complete on their own. The Family Considerations page provides a place for families to share some information about their child and family, their routines, their concerns, and other resources.
- Conversation Starters(pdf) - FACETS provides conversation starters and follow-up questions to learn about family activities and routines. Early Interventionists (service coordinators and providers) may find this to be a useful tool to learn about the families they are serving.
Beginning the Partnership
Being Respectful and Responsive to Linguistic and Cultural Needs (Cultural Competence)
- ECTA Family-Centered Practices Checklist (pdf) - This checklist is intended for practitioners (and leaders where noted) to increase their understanding and use of the DEC Recommended Practices and for self-evaluation of one's use of the practices.
- Checklist for Assessing Adherence to Family-Centered Practices (pdf) - This CASEtool describes the development and use of the Family-Centered Practices Checklist for promoting the use of and adherence to evidence-based family-centered practices. It provides a basis for joint or self-reflection as a way of evaluating one's behaviors against a set of behaviorally stated evidence-based practice indicators.
Family Capacity-Building Practices
Engaging the family (Family Engagement)
Information Sharing (providing families with current, unbiased, and accessible information)
Helping families know their rights
Family and Professional Collaboration
Informing families about leadership and advocacy opportunities
Working with families to access formal and informal resources
Practices that build relationships between families and professionals: