Fall 2007 Message from the President

President's Message

This newsletter should find you in the midst of fall festivities! With the KDEC annual conference just around the corner, the KDEC board hopes that you are looking forward to a great time just as we are!

This is our 26th year of KDEC and the conference will continue to help us all celebrate our profession by learning new skills, making new friends, and networking with colleagues. The title of the conference says it well-- “Positive Outcomes for All”. We hope that the speakers and the presentations will help you not only provide positive outcomes for your children, but also get positive outcomes for yourself!

Please make plans to celebrate with us March 6-7, 2008 in Wichita! Keep checking the web site for conference updates at www.kdec.org. Look for session descriptions later in the year. KDEC board members heard the membership say, “we need and want better communication!” We hope that the newsletter and website will provide part of that communication!

I would like to invite you to join me in saying welcome to Cindy Kongs, our new Vice-President. She will be taking on the conference after this year—welcome, Cindy!

Gayle Stuber moves into the President position this year. Gayle worked on last year’s conference and still is appreciating all the work that everyone one the board did to help make the conference a success. This year’s conference chair duties belong to our President Elect, Peggy Miksch. Peggy has been a part of KDEC for several years—and is a master at putting together a wonderful conference! Thank you, Peggy, for your continuing support of KDEC and the profession!

Inclusion is, and always has been, something that we strive to do. The conference will have many presentations that support inclusion—it is a critical piece of the profession. We cannot provide positive outcomes for all if we do not have inclusive settings and use inclusive practices. Several of ‘us’ are members of an Expanding Opportunities Team, working to develop a stronger inclusive effort across agencies. KDEC members within the Kansas State Department of Education are a part of this—as are Head Start, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, Social and Rehabilitative Services. Collaboration, communication—inclusion!

In closing, I want to continue the emphasis on professionalism. KDEC is a strong professional organization. Early Childhood is front and center these days in both Kansas and the nation. We need to collaborate for the good of the field—and for the children and families we serve. Please consider the important role KDEC plays as your professional organization. I ask that each of you make a commitment to KDEC this year by supporting the organization through participation in our annual conference and encouraging colleagues to join us! Your continued involvement keeps our subdivision strong, resourceful, and innovative in our field.

We look forward to seeing you in Wichita!

Gayle Stuber, President

A Message for KDEC Membership

KDEC 2008 Conference

The KDEC 2008 conference is coming up. This year, the KDEC annual conference, “Positive Outcomes for All!” will be held in Wichita, Kansas at the Wichita Hilton Airport Executive Conference Center March 6-7, 2008. We are excited to have two great keynotes and several featured speakers.

Dr. Winnie Dunn will join us on March 6, 2008. Dr. Dunn, professor & chair of the department of occupational therapy education, university of Kansas medical center has just published a popular press book titled: Living Sensationally: Understanding your senses. In addition, Dr. Dunn is the author of the Sensory Profile family of products which includes the Sensory Profile, Infant/Toddler Sensory Profile, Adolescent/Adult Sensory Profile, and the new Sensory Profile School Companion.

Dr. Virginia Buysse will join us on March 7, 2008. Dr. Buysse is a Senior Scientist at the FPG Child Development Institute and Research Associate Professor in the School of Education at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Dr. Buysse is working to examine the evidence base of Recognition and Response, an early intervening system for children in pre-k who may be at risk for learning disabilities. She will share her insights as to how RTI fits with Pre-K.

In addition, we expect many excellent presentations from state and local level professionals and a variety of exhibitors.

Peggy Miksch is the Conference Chair, and she is working closely with the conference committee to put together a special conference. We anticipate many quality submissions.

Registration information for the conference will be at www.kdec.org. It is anticipated that this registration will be open Jan. 2008.

Proposal Applications are on the web site now!

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We Welcome Membership Involvement at the 2008 Conference!

Are you friendly, outgoing and willing to make a difference by assisting your fellow KDEC members? If you answered “YES,” then we need you to join the ranks of other KDEC members who volunteer their time to ensure that the Kansas Division for Early Childhood continues to be the most informative, educational and inspiring event year after year.

Volunteering is a great way to meet and get to know other early childhood professionals, plus you will be doing something to help your member organization. Various tasks that are available include: help at the registration desk, assistance with hosting sessions, and other adventures! For more information and to apply for a volunteer position, contact Peggy Miksch at pmiksch@ku.edu. We hope you will attend the exciting events planned this year and look forward to seeing each of you at the conference.

Where can I find information about KDEC?

Members can find information about KDEC and the KDEC conference at www.kdec.org. This website is used to post the latest newsletter and other important information. The site is updated as new information is supplied.


Several hundred participants gathered in Wichita to collaborate – i.e. make beautiful music together! “Bongo Barry Bernstein started us off well by giving us a ‘beat’ to learn by. Kathy Snow helped us see our work from a parent’s perspective. The result was an energized group who went on to sessions about school readiness, learning about evaluation and assessment, family supports, and coaching. KDEC once again collaborated with Head Start to provide a collaboration conference strand. Overall, the conference went well and was a collaborative learning experience for all who attended.

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Thank you for your time on the KDEC Board!

We would like to take the time to say thank you to our 2007 outgoing board members. Your time, energy and dedication are greatly appreciated.

Outgoing President Jennifer Tasset served 4 year Presidential rotation from 2002-2006
Outgoing Secretary Jennifer Oborny for Service 2005-2007
Outgoing Student Representative - Sanna Harjusola-Webb

Kansas Division For Early Childhood – Board Nominations

The Nominations and Elections Committee of KDEC is soliciting recommendations from the membership for the offices of Presidential Rotation and Secretary beginning July 2008. Self-nomination is encouraged. The Presidential Rotation Position requires a commitment of 4 years with a rotation of 1 year each in the positions of Vice-President, President-Elect, President, and Past-President. The Secretary position requires a two-year commitment. All nominees must be current KDEC members at the time of nomination and throughout the commitment and nominations must be received by December 20, 2007. Please email or send your nominations (name, position, address, phone, e-mail, and your name) to: KDEC nominations Committee, c/o Dale Walker, Juniper Gardens Children's Project, 650 Minnesota Ave. 2nd floor, Kansas City, KS 66101 Phone: 913-321-3143, e-mail: walkerd@ku.edu

Meet our Vice President

Cindy will serve a four year term which will include Vice-President, President Elect, President and Past President

My name is Cindy Kongs and I am looking forward to serving as KDEC Vice President. I am currently working as an educational consultant, which includes presenting in-services in the use of the Assessment Evaluation Programming Systems. I hold degrees in elementary education, learning disabilities and early childhood disabilities. I worked as an early childhood disabilities teacher for thirteen years. My background in elementary education and learning disabilities has emphasized the importance of a quality early childhood experience. I envision my time on the KDEC board as a time to make a positive impact in the organization, the children it is intended to serve and the professionals who provide the services.

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How to contact your KDEC 2007-2008 Board Members & Committee Representatives:

KDEC 2007-2008 Board Members and Committee Representatives
Gayle Stuber, Ph.D.
(W) 785-296-5352
FAX 785-296-3523
Jennifer Tasset
(W) 620-225-5177
FAX 620-227-2072
Past President
Dale Walker, Ph.D.
Juniper Gardens Children’s Project
650 Minnesota Avenue, 2nd Floor
Kansas City, KS 66101
(W) 913-321-3143
FAX: 913-371-8522
Kansas ICC Representative
Doug Bowman
(W) 785-296-1294
FAX 785-296-8616
President Elect
Peggy Miksch
40627 K-99 HWY
Wamego Kansas, 66547
Kansas Inservice Training System
Children Action Network (CAN)
Doug Bowman
1000 SW Jackson, Suite 220
Topeka, KS 66610-1274
(W) 785-296-1294
FAX 785-296-8616
Vice President
Cindy Kongs
KCCTO Representative
Open Position
Teri Varuska
Kansas CEC Representative
Open Position
Chelie Nelson, Ph.D.
Harvey County Special Education Cooperative
KAEYC Representative
Gayle Stuber
(W) 785-296-5352
FAX 785-296-3523
Family Concerns Representative
Maria Martinez
E-Mail: hplbookworm@yahoo.com
Membership Committee
Ginny Butts
Futures Unlimited
2410 North A
Wellington, KS 67152
(W) 620-326-8906 x224
FAX 620-326-7796
Student Representative
Sara Gould

Ex-Officio Member
Carolyn Nelson
Children’s Developmental Services
1000 SW Jackson, Suite 220
Topeka, KS 66612-1274
(W) 785-296-6135
FAX 785-296-8626
Ex-Officio Member
David Lindeman, Ph.D.
Kansas University Center on
Developmental Disabilities
(620) 421-6550 extension 1713

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Spotlight – 2007 Mini Grant Project

Parent Empowerment in Early Intervention

Five parents who have experienced success in early intervention share their stories in a new video, Parent Empowerment in Early Intervention. The video was created for viewing by parents who are new to Part C services. Jane Eby, Research Assistant for Rainbows United, Inc., produced the video in collaboration with Rule Productions in Wichita in early 2007. Funding was provided by a mini-grant from KDEC and Wichita State University. The goal of the project was to capture a glimpse of early intervention from the parent’s point of view: first-hand accounts of parent discoveries, developing self-confidence and self-efficacy, learning to trust service providers, and transformation through the IFSP process. All of the parents received their early intervention through Rainbows United, Inc.

Eby will use the video in her current dissertation research for her Ph.D. in Community Psychology at WSU. The research question is whether parents new to early intervention services who watch this video will self-report as more empowered than parents who do not watch the video. The measures of parent empowerment that will be used are the Family Empowerment Scale (Koren, DeChillo & Friesen, 1992), and the Family Outcomes Survey (Bailey, Hebbeler & Bruder, 2006), both used with permission. Once the results of the research are published, Eby plans to distribute the video.

Parent empowerment is a goal of early intervention. Collaboration between service providers and parents empowers both. Empowerment theory conceives a process in which individuals first become empowered in their own situation and then proceed to help others and to produce change. Community psychology, social work, and organizational perspectives of empowerment include a person’s group identity as one of the necessary ingredients that lead to empowerment. The project proposes that parents need to have an orientation to their identity and status as parents of children with special needs in order to develop in their role as advocates, teachers and change agents.
The original intent of the video project was to provide a video to orient parents to the content of the Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP). This gave way to the current production, as we realized that a peer-to-peer video would have more impact and be more valuable for parents who are new to the early intervention system.

Jane Eby can be contacted at jleby@wichita.edu

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2008 KDEC Mini Grant Awards

Congratulations to the following applicants for the Mini Grant Awards. These individuals and agencies were awarded $500 from KDEC:

Michelle Hepner and Ailiana Garcia, Special Education Teachers
Rolling Ridge Elementary School, Olathe School District
Promoting Early Intervention with Literacy to Families and Children with Disabilities

Vera Lynne Stroup-Rentier, Early Childhood Special Education Teacher
Shawnee County Infant and Toddler Services at TARC
SCITS Family Portfolios

Vera Lynne Stroup-Rentier, Early Childhood Special Education Teacher
Shawnee County Infant and Toddler Services at TARC
SCITS Staff Portfolios

Dena Bracciano, Tiny-K Early Intervention Coordinator
Lacey Novak, KU Community Health Senior and Tiny-K Intern
Tiny-K Early Intervention Douglas County
Torticollis and Plagiocephaly Prevention Campaign

2007 Awards from KDEC
Congratulations to this group of dedicated individuals!

2007 Award of Excellence Award – Judith J. Carta, PhD

2007 Distinguished Service Provider Award - Jan Hathaway

2007 Outstanding Contributor Award: - Dale Dennis

2007 Direct Service Provider – DeAnna McCloud -

2007 Outstanding Student DEC Member - Amanda Tyrrel

Please Help Select Next Years
Award Winners!
2008 KDEC Award Information
Is Included Below!
There are so many talented individuals in this field!
Take the time today to formally recognize a colleague that makes a difference!!!

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KDEC Award Nominations

The KDEC Awards Committee NEEDS nominations from the field for five special awards to recognize individuals who have made important contributions to the field of early childhood special education/early intervention. Now is the time to give recognition to those who deserve it within our field. The five categories of awards include:

Outstanding Contributor Award

This award honors an individual who has made significant contributions to early intervention in Kansas. This award is open to members as well as nonmembers. Persons who might be considered could include family members, legislators, physicians, educators, and any individuals providing services to young children and their families.

Direct Service Provider Award

This award is presented to a current DEC/KDEC member who has made significant contributions to young children with exceptionalities and their families. The candidate for this award should have less than ten years of direct service in the field. This award honors those who are beginning their career and have made exemplary contributions in their local area.

Award of Excellence

This award honors an individual who has made significant contributions in the following areas of early intervention: publications, research, development of new concepts, approaches or programs, new techniques for diagnosis or rehabilitation, improved psychological or education evaluation procedures, improved administrative procedures, practical application of improved teaching devices, and dynamic leadership.

Distinguished Service Provider Award

This award is presented to a current DEC/KDEC member who has demonstrated exemplary performance over a period of at least ten years as a direct service provider and is recognized by members of the profession as someone who demonstrates innovativeness, imagination, creativity, and the ability to inspire. This person must be a member in good standing both currently and for at least the previous five years.

Outstanding Student DEC Member Award

This award is presented to a current full time student member of DEC/KDEC who has contributed a great deal of time, energy, or support to early childhood special education. This can include activities within their Student CEC Chapter and/or to children who are exceptional and their families.

Please take a few moments of your time to nominate a candidate for one or more of these awards. Awards will be presented at annual KDEC conference March 6 - 7 2008 in Wichita.  Nominating an individual simply involves filling out a nomination form.  This form can be found on the on the following page or at www.kdec.org.  Contact Dale Walker, Past President at walkerd@ku.edu or (913-321-3143) with any questions.

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KDEC Awards Nomination Form

All nominations must be in writing and must include the nominee’s vita/resume, a cover letter describing the individual’s worthiness for receiving the award, and a minimum of one letter of recommendation (outside of the nominator).

Category individual is being nominated for:

___Outstanding Student
___Direct Service Provider
___Distinguished Service Provider
___Award of Excellence
___Outstanding Contributor

Name of Nominee:________________________________________________________


KDEC ID Number:________________________________________________________


Home Address:________________________________________________________


Home Phone:__________________________________________________________


Name and Address of Nominee’s school or agency (if employed)_____________________________________________________________


Nominee’s Current Position:______________________________________________________


Number of years of experience: Current position______   Total years______


Nominator Completing This Form









NOMINATIONS DUE:  January 15, 2008

Please submit by mail or an email attachment and forward to:

Dale Walker
KDEC Past President
Juniper Gardens Children's Project
650 Minnesota Ave. 2nd Floor
Kansas City, KS 66101

Questions?  913-321-3143  X206

KDEC Focus on Membership

The Division for Early Childhood (DEC) is an international professional organization designed for professionals and families associated with infants and young children with special needs. It was formed as a division of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) in 1973. The Kansas Division for Early Childhood (KDEC) is a state subdivision of the International Division for Early Childhood and began in 1982. Our subdivision is seeking persons to be part of this organization. By joining, you will receive the benefits of numerous publications (Young Exceptional Children, Teaching Exceptional Children, Exceptional Children, and Journal of Early Intervention). KDEC also provides the opportunity to interact, collaborate, and communicate with others in the field; be informed on innovations in research, policy, best practices, and currents issues; and be eligible for reduced rates at the KDEC annual conference. New members may contact Ginny Butts, KDEC Membership Chair at membership@kdec.org or call 620-326-8906, ext. 224 for an application. Or, for easier and quicker membership, visit the Council for Exceptional Children at www.cec.sped.org. Please consider joining our organization and supporting the children and families around the state.  If you are already a member, share this information with a colleague and invite them to check out the DEC website at http://www.dec-sped.org/index.html for more information about the benefits of membership.

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Student Membership

Hello Students!!

As you know, the 2008 KDEC Conference is coming up.  Over the past few years, student involvement has increased and I would love to see that continue!  We will again have a poster session, so please consider submitting a proposal to present a poster.  It can be targeted to parents, researcher, teachers, or other professionals or community members.  The basic requirement is simply that it contains information about children ages birth 5 years old.  Besides being an excellent way to share what we are doing with conference attendees, this is a great opportunity to expend our experiences and build our vitas.

In addition to the poster session, this year’s conference will also include a discussion panel session in which we will have the opportunity to ask questions to various types of professionals about their career path, how past experiences they have had benefited them, experiences they wished they had gotten, etc.  This is a valuable way in which we can better gauge what we might like to do in the field and how to best prepare to be there.

Finally, the annual conference is only one thing that KDEC has to offer.  Please consider becoming a member!!  First, belonging to a professional organization illustrates an interest in the current state of the field and in connecting with other professionals.  Networking is a powerful learning opportunity and can make the professional road an easier one to travel.  Joining KDEC also brings the benefits of receiving a variety of publications (Teaching Exceptional Children, Exceptional Children, and CEC Today) throughout the year, as well as the opportunity to save 30% off all CEC publications.  Since the CEC is our parent organization, to join KDEC you must first join CEC (cost is $66) and then join the Division of Early Childhood (cost is $12).  Then you are automatically a member of KDEC!!

I hope to meet more of you at the conference and see posters presenting all of the wonderful things you are currently working on!!  Please extend this opportunity to your classmates and coworkers as well.  The more we grow, the more KDEC can offer us.

Thank you!
Sara Gould
KDEC Student Representative

Early Learning Document

A collaborative group is now training across the state on the Kansas Early Learning document. This document includes standards and guidelines for children ages birth to five years. The training is being provided by members of KSDE, SRS, staff. Please go to the KITS website, www.kskits.org to find dates and locations for future trainings.  NOTE: A session at the KDEC conference will be training on the document!

If you have questions about the KDEC NEWSBRIEF contact us at newsletter@kdec.org

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