FREE On-Line Paraprofessional/Intervener Training

From the New England Consortium for Deafblind Technical Assistance (NEC)

computer keyboardThe New England Consortium for Deafblind Technical Assistance (NEC) is collaborating with the National Center on Deaf-Blindness (NCDB) to provide regional intervener training during the 2017-2018 school year (states of CT, ME, MA & NH). The training provides a wonderful opportunity for schools or programs with paraprofessionals/aides, teachers or service providers who would like to receive FREE intervener training. Participants who complete ALL requirements will receive a $500 stipend from NEC.  Note – application is required and space is limited.

Training will include:

  • An online course of study—hosted by an expert in deaf-blindness/sensory loss and additional disabilities—using    modules developed by the National Center on Deaf-Blindness.  NOTE:  Often, children with multiple disabilities have vision and hearing loss that goes undetected or staff are unaware of the impact of sensory loss on learning and effective intervention strategies.
  • Coaching and consultation from New England Consortium (NEC) personnel.
  • NEC support of the candidate as he or she develops a portfolio required for certification.

Why Interveners?

Interveners help schools meet the challenge of providing students who are deaf-blind with access to information they are unable to gather via vision and hearing. An intervener works one-on-one with a student, facilitating communication and supporting concept development. In educational settings, interveners are typically paraeducators (paraprofessional, ed techs) who have received specialized training in deaf-blindness and the process of intervention. Nationwide, there exists a great need for trained interveners and there is a federal initiative to increase the number of trained interveners.

School/Agency Requirements

Participating schools and agencies must have:

  • A child with deaf-blindness for whom the intervener candidate will provide one-to-one intervention and support during the 2017-2018 school year.
  • An established educational team for the child (including family members) that supports the intervener candidate as he or she participates in the training program.
  • Administrators who are knowledgeable about the role of an intervener and actively support the position.
  • A willingness to work with NEC personnel as they provide technical assistance to the intervener candidate and possibly the team as a whole.
  • The ability to provide release time and support will increase the likelihood that the intervener candidate will complete the training.

Benefits to Schools/Agencies and Children

Benefits of this training program include:

  • High-quality professional development for the intervener.
  • Increased knowledge and skills for the intervener regarding the use of evidence-based practices.
  • Interveners that meet Council for Exceptional Children competencies.
  • National intervener certification.
  • Anticipated improved student outcomes.

Courses of Study: Additional Information

The training uses the Open Hands, Open Access Deaf-Blind Intervener Learning Modules, which are aligned with CEC competencies for interveners. Three different courses of study will be offered in order to meet the needs of candidates with varying levels of experience. The most appropriate course for each participant will be determined by the participant and NEC, based on years of experience, prior training, and the results of a self-evaluation (provided by NCDB) that each candidate will complete.

Each participant will also take two modules that will prepare them to develop a portfolio using the National Intervener Certification E-Portfolio (NICE) system.

During the training, participants will receive:

  • Feedback on all assignments.
  • Support and monitoring to ensure active engagement.
  • Opportunities for discussion with other participants via web conferencing.
  • Coaching and consultation from NEC staff – within the New England area.
  • Mentoring as they develop an intervener portfolio.

For more information and to register

Contact the New England Consortium (NEC):

Tracy Evans Luiselli, Ed.D.
Project Director
New England Consortium for Deafblind Technical Assistance (NEC)
Deafblind Technical Assistance and Training (NEC)
Regional Office: 175 North Beacon St., Watertown, MA 02472
Office: (617) 972-7517
tracy.luiselli@perkins.org