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Families

Training and Best Practices headerECHO for Families is a community that provides opportunities for learning, advocacy, and mentorship with families that have a child with developmental disabilities, autism, or other special healthcare needs. This network allows families to receive professional support and brainstorm evidence-based solutions or share successes with other families around the state and nation.

The UW ECHO for Families is the first ECHO network that provides information directly to families and can be accessed anywhere in the state.

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Sessions

Sessions are on Wednesdays, biweekly,
12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. MT
via Zoom video conferencing technology.

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Instructions for joining Zoom are available. Zoom also provides access for users with physical disabilities, blindness, and low vision through a range of keyboard shortcuts.

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Fall 2022 Learning Topics

September 14: ABCs of Special Education

This session will cover the basics of special education. Special education for many parents can be like the "House of Mirrors" at the carnival. It may seem like there is no clear cut path to the finish line. In this session, we will discuss and define the many acronyms found in special education and the process of special education. Participants will gain a greater understanding of IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Act), define terms of IDEA, and describe the steps of the special education process from evaluation to re-evaluation.

Presenter: Jenniffer Blaylock, Project Director, Parent Information Center

September 28: Executive Functioning

Executive Functioning encompasses a set of skills including organization, planning, flexibility, attention, and time management. These skills can be challenging, especially for children on the autism spectrum and for those with other disabilities, like ADHD. Katrina McGee, a parent, will present on executive functioning and give examples of ways that parents can address these issues at home during homework time and at school in partnership with their IEP team.

Presenter: Katrina McGee, Parent and Advocate

October 12: Common Mental Health Needs and Supports for Youth

Participants will be able to list mental health challenges that are frequently experienced by youth and describe resources available for supporting youth and families with mental health support needs.

Presenter: Theresa Andrzejewski, Graduate Teaching Assistant, Department of Psychology, University of Wyoming

October 26: Signs of Trauma Among Youth

Participants will be able to describe common signs of trauma and PTSD among youth and describe supports available for treating trauma symptoms among youth.

Presenter: Theresa Andrzejewski, Graduate Teaching Assistant, Department of Psychology, University of Wyoming

November 9: Transitions

Participants will be able to define transitions (including major vs. minor), define generalization (specifically setting/situation generalization), and identify successful transition strategies (visual, verbal, pre-teaching).

Presenter: Jessica Aikens, M.Ed., BCBA, Director of Laramie Region, Peak Behavioral Services, LLC

December 7: Crisis Support

This session will discuss triggers which may lead to escalations and crisis, identify early warning signs or physical cues, help caretakers and their families to develop a list of coping skills and tools to help an individual calm themselves, identify alternative supports if the initial plan isn't helping or things become unsafe, and help caregivers and families to identify local supports and resources to ensure safety. Participants will also have an opportunity to begin developing their crisis plan.

Presenter: Kyla Maestas, Program Director and Family Care Coordinator, Acceptance & Abilities 

*December 7 Session Registration* 

Spring 2023 Learning Topics

January 11: Kick-off to Parental Resilience

Session description coming soon.

Presenter: Wyoming Kids First

*January 11 Session Registration*

January 25: Parental Resilience

This session will focus on the ability to recover from difficult life experiences, and often to be strengthened by and even transformed by those experiences.

Presenters: Sheena Hixson, Coordinator, Mercer Family Resource Center and Anna La Torre, Family and Parent Specialist, Mercer Family Resource Center

*January 25 Session Registration*

February 8: Social Connections 

This session will focus on the ability and opportunity to develop positive relationships that lessen stress and isolation and help to build a supportive network.

Presenters: Tamara Currah, Teacher, Sublette County School District #1 and Emily Vercoe

*February 8 Session Registration*

February 22: Concrete Support in Times of Need

This session will focus on access to supports and services that reduce stress and help to make families stronger.

Presenters: Emily Isaacson, Administrator, Lincoln County School District #2 and Michelle Heinen, Director, UPLIFT

*February 22 Session Registration*

March 8: Knowledge of Parenting and Child Development

This session will focus on the ability to exercise effective parenting strategies to guide and know what to expect as children develop in multiple domains (physical, cognitive, language and social and emotional).

Presenters: Brianna Romero, Director, The Early Learning Center and Susan Buettgenback, Program Coordinator, Parents as Teachers

*March 8 Session Registration*

March 22: Social and Emotional Competence of Children

This session will focus on family and child interactions that help children develop the ability to communicate clearly, recognize and regulate their emotions and establish and maintain relationships.

Presenters: Martha Nesslinger, Program Director, Wyoming Early Childhood Behavioral Consultants

*March 22 Session Registration*


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Contact Us

UW Project ECHO

1000 E. University Ave. Dept. 4298

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-2977

Email: projectecho@uwyo.edu

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