Newsletter Archive

Newsletter Issue 13: 04/30/09


SpecialQuest Birth–Five Newsletter

WOW! You've been busy! The SpecialQuest Resource Bank is loaded with new resources. We even had to create a new category: Brochures, Presentations, and Communications. Be sure to browse the Resource Bank to find out what others in our community are doing!


We've been busy, too! Here are a few of the new resources available to you:


Effective Practices from the Field – a new way to share the good work you are doing by linking out to your resources that are already posted on the Internet. Read the newsletter Spotlight to learn about the first Effective Practice from the Field which focuses on transition.


Ask an Expert! – from April 27–May 8, we'll have the opportunity to talk about transition with two experts in the SpecialQuest Discussion Forums. See the Ask an Expert box below for details.
Quick Start Guide – a brief introduction to the SpecialQuest Multimedia Training Library with key information about the training materials as well as some helpful hints for using the materials. Available on the homepage of the Library.


Social  Media Icons



Social Media– we have begun to post video clips on YouTube and continue to post to the SpecialQuest Facebook Page, Twitter Account, and the wikis. Too many places to remember? Not anymore! You can access all of these resources through a new Social Media page on the SpecialQuest website!




The SpecialQuest Approach – the full description of the approach has received a facelift. Check out the full color version on the approach page of the Library.


I can't wait to see what comes up with in the next month!

susan's signature



Ask and Expert About Transition!


Judy KimmelDiscussion Forums open April 27–May 8


Judy Kimmel, former coordinator of the New Mexico Early Childhood Transition Initiative, will be our guest April 27- May 1. Judy will be available to talk about an ongoing cross-agency, statewide training program targeted at improving transitions for young children with disabilities and their families when the child turns 3. (Learn more about the Initiative in the Spotlight below.)



Beth RousBeth Rous, Principal Investigator of the National Early Childhood Transition Center and co-author of A Review of Research in Early Childhood Transition: Child and Family Studies, Technical Report #5, will answer your questions about transition on May 3-8.


Go to the Discussion Forum page and follow the instructions.


Not registered yet? Visit Getting Started.


Spotlight: The New Mexico Early Childhood Transition Initiative


New Mexico FlagJudy Kimmel: The New Mexico Early Childhood Transition Initiative has transformed the manner in which children and families are transitioned from early intervention services into other services and supports - Head Start, DD preschool, child care, private preschool, or any combination thereof.


"The SpecialQuest model served as the basis of design and will continue to influence the development of the statewide initiative".


The SpecialQuest approach and the SpecialQuest way of doing things is very integral to our initiative. The two cannot be separated. Our initiative would not have been able to achieve its intended outcomes and realize its vision if the elements of SpecialQuest were not so embedded throughout.


The SpecialQuest model served as the basis of design and will continue to influence the development of the statewide initiative.


Everything in SpecialQuest is done with intention. All aspects of the curriculum and implementation are done with purposeful design; all elements of the model are crafted and refined to lead to an ultimate outcome. Core values are not only interwoven through the curriculum but are evident in word, action, and deed. These values work very subtly, and by their nature, create a climate of support, respect, and excellent.


To get a flavor of what our initiative is about, go to the new Effective Practices from the Field page on the SpecialQuest website.


The ideas, concepts, and ideals from SpecialQuest were important to us as we began to envision what we wanted for New Mexico and how we would achieve that. SpecialQuest gave us the "know how" to be able to build our New Mexico model and approach. Incorporating, embedding, and emulating the core values into the design of our model has been (and is) the factor that makes this statewide effort unique and viable over time. Adapting many of the SpecialQuest materials and resources has been very beneficial in making our trainings and outreach efforts more successful. Bringing representatives from Head Start, Early Head Start, Early Intervention/Part C, Special Education/Part B, and child care together with families on an equal playing field has spawned partnerships of mutual respect and forged a level of dialogue that did not exist prior to the Initiative. The heightened presence of good-will and desire to work "as a team" on behalf of families is alive and well! Evidence exists to inform us that our efforts have made a difference. The influence of SpecialQuest is, without a doubt, fundamental to this.


Judy Kimmel served as the Statewide Coordinator for the New Mexico Early Childhood Transition Initiative from 1999-2007. Judy was a SpecialQuest Learning Coach and Trainer. She currently serves as one of New Mexico's SpecialQuest State Leadership Team coaches. Judy can be reached at 505-466-4527 or via email at



New Resources


MapInteractive MOU Map - examples of state level Memorandums of Agreement or Understanding are accessible from the Office of Head Start's Early Childhood Knowledge and Learning Center.


Transition Research - a new publication from the National Early Childhood Transition Center: A Review of Research in Early Childhood Transition: Child and Family Studies, Technical Report #5.



Where in the World is SpecialQuest?


SpecialQuest LogoMay 1: MA Early Childhood Inclusion

Symposium, Worchester State College


May 5-8: Smart Start Conference

Greensboro, NC


June 14-17: NAEYC Professional Development Institute

Charlotte, NC


June 22-25: Birth-Three Institute

Washington, DC


July 14-16: Inclusion Institute
Chapel Hill, NC



Ninth Annual Early Childhood Inclusion Institute



Join leaders in the field to learn the latest research findings and resources to guide inclusive policy, professional development and practice for children birth though five.




Register for the National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute.





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