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Training model for future interveners not yet attached to a student - how?

Interveners and Qualified Personnel

Hello everybody - I want to pick your brains on this. A community college would like to develop a certificate in DeafBlindness. All would take a class in DB 101-type information, then they would get to choose the child or adult strand. the child strand would eventually lead to the intervener certificate, and the adult strand could also lead to the certificate, and work as an SSP or VASP, or both. BUT - there people might not yet be working with a family or school or child - so the traditional intervener training model would need to be tweaked to allow for the scholar to be connected to a child, develop a relationship, and THEN develop skills and work on a practicum. Has anybody had experience in a situation or program like this? Even with one individual? What were the timelines? Thanks for any ideas for a possible new model...

Michelle Clyne

Posted Mar 21, 2017 by Michelle Clyne

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Comments (2)

Linda, thanks for your ideas and for sharing this question with the webinar participants and presenters. In Illinois we do have several sites that can serve for practicum locations. I am especially concerned with helping the potential program plan on "building relationship" time into the scholar schedule prior to the practicum - it might seem like a hard sell to the committee deciding on new programs!

Michelle Clyne

Posted Mar 22, 2017 by Michelle Clyne

Thank you for bringing up these questions, Michele - the day before a webinar about professional development models ( - we may get some ideas from this presentation by Cathy Nelson and Amy Parker - or at least be able to bring this up for discussion with participants.
From my experience personnel prep faculty at any level - teacher training or intervener training programs - struggle with how to have meaningful practicum settings for learners in their courses who are not currently working with students, schools or families - for application of strategies covered in courses. This makes is hard to move from building knowledge competencies to building skill competencies. I'll be glad to pass these questions on to the personnel prep program faculty group...
What I have done before when in this kind of situation was to establish or collaborate with an existing week long summer camp or spring break camp that attracted the students the course learners needed to be with. Course learners would have to volunteer for the week - putting into practice certain strategies from courses - with families aware that some of the staff are volunteers (current course learners.) Setting up a camp or even collaborating with an existing one requires full time faculty availability and is a whole lot of work (course learner travel and housing logistics are part of this model). This experience is better if what is also required of course learners is to spend multiple smaller blocks of time in school with student or with family and student at home or in the community prior to camp - relationship building. Then course learners may need followup time after camp week, videoing themselves demonstrating strategies with the student. (For this to be doable for the course learner, a good geographic match is needed between them and the student they are spending time with.)
All these logistics mean I hope we get additional ideas from others who are engaged in professional development!

Linda McDowell

Posted Mar 21, 2017 by Linda McDowell

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