Message 36: Winter 2018 (incomplete)

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Greetings, ECDtf members and friends,

This Message # 36 alerts you to recent activities and developments of interest, upcoming events, and new resources. Minutes from our recent meetings in Ghent and Mumbai appear in section one updates, pp. 4-10, and we look forward to your participation in our next in-person gathering in Tblisi in May. Sincere appreciation to the many of you who have volunteered time to review and comment on the recent initiatives by IDDC Call to Action to Invest in Disability-Inclusive Education and WHO Nurturing Care. Please be sure to engage with the WHO on-line consultation scheduled to open January 22; instruction for access will be relayed as soon as they become available.


  1. ECDtf and GPcwd updates
  2. New OSEP Early Childhood Centers
  3. Calls for Papers & Proposals & Nominations & Evidence
  4. Upcoming meetings
  5. On-line courses, webinars
  6. New resources

Featured resources e20fe20f07a39fa 2018 revision of the important Disabled Village Children manual

2017_9789264276116-en#.WlTgiXlG1D8#page1 key OECD Indicators

Evidence-Paper-September-2017.pdf strong and explicit on disability matters least.html when you have 20 minutes for some pointed,

poignant humor GapsInEdAttainmentLiteracy-Brief-WebReady-v5.pdf has-down-syndrome_us_5a00a74fe4b0baea2633c561 strong on ECD and on disability – but in need of an IECD focus the new 3 R’s: “rights, resources, and research” to realize quality inclusive education; sadly, no mention of ECD and note our new section of resources on nomenclature, labels #diversity and #adinclusion education/?utm_source=INEE+email+lists&utm_campaign=86599b8f98- BWB_2015_7_2&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_710662b6ab-86599b8f98-8566993#more-11292 F is for Fun

Page 63: Children with disabilities face substantial obstacles to education—and substantially lower participation in school.35 In Burkina Faso, having a disability increases the probability of a child never attending

school by about two times.36 Even in countries with
high overall primary school enrollments, children
with disabilities are still significantly less likely to
attend school. In Moldova, 97 percent of children without disabilities between the ages of 7 and 15 years are enrolled in primary school, whereas only 58 percent of children with disabilities are in school.37 At the

same time, quality education for children with disabilities has significant economic and social returns.
Across 12 developing countries, each additional year
of schooling for people with a disability decreased their probability of being in the poorest two quintiles

by between 2 and 5 percentage points.38

1. ECDtf & GPcwd updates

a) Appreciation to Diane Whitehead for submitting these minutes from our ECDtf meeting at ISSA in Ghent October 5, 2017:

ECDtf overview and updates

1) Strategic Plan Priorities & Expression of Interest Forms
Donald reminded everyone of the strategic priorities of the ECDtf and reported that a new website will be launched by the end of the year, including the Expression of Interest Forms See
2) Mapping Task Team Survey Update
The Mapping Task Team will provide a survey update at the International Development

Pediatrics Association conference, to be held in Mumbai, December 7-10th.
3) Zika Task Team
This team was formed to ensure programs and services that are responsive to complex disabilities resulting from children who contracted the Zika virus. Despite the fact that the World Health Organization (WHO) has downgraded Zika from a crisis/emergency, there is still significant concern about the welfare of the children that have been affected.
4) Advocacy Task Team

There are ongoing opportunities for advocacy as follows:

  • European Academy for Childhood Disability- The EACD Conference will be held in Tblisi, Georgia, May 28-31, 2018. There are 35 nations represented as a part of this network which offers good potential for advocacy. For more information go to
  • International Disability Alliance- This alliance brings together over 1,100 organizations working on issues of persons with disabilities from around the world. For more information go to
  • Eurlyaid- Eurlyaid/Ukraine will host the Eurlyaid conference in Kharkov, Ukraine in October, 2018. Eric noted that there will be a meeting of the ECDtf at the Eurlyaid conference. For more information go to
  • ARNEC- The Asia-Pacific Regional Network for Early Childhood, ARNEC conference will be held in Katmandu, Nepal in May, 2018. More information will be released soon on the ARNEC website at

There needs to be more discussion of partnerships for advocacy for the ECDtf in China.

A new film called “Life Animated” has been released. There may be an opportunity to

showcase this film at the EACD conference in Tbilisi in May, 2018. For more information about this film, go to .
A concern was expressed over the term “inclusive.” She stated that the word “inclusive” encompasses more than disability alone. A number of matters of denotation, connotation, surplus meaning, perceptions of terms and jargon continue to complicate discussions.

Formation of “Children-on-the-Move” Task Team

During the next 12 months, the UN system will be engaged in strategic positioning for the new initiative, “Children on the Move,” which deals with the circumstances of migrant and refugee children. There is a task team forming to lead the strategic positioning; however, more information is need as to what extent this strategy will include consideration of children with disabilities. Jane Lucas noted that she would be interested in taking a closer look at this issue for the ECDtf. An addendum on guidance for people with disabilities has just been issued in German and Eric offered to translate a summary.

Enhancing partnerships with ISSA, OSF ECI network, CEPPs, ECDAN, IAACD collaboration opportunities; liaison with diverse partnerships, initiatives.
Reminder that the Open Society Foundation’s Early Childhood Intervention Partners

would be meeting at the ISSA conference later in the day. CEPPS (Childhood and Early Parenting Principles) is looking for collaboration opportunities. A brief discussion ensued on several related topics:

• Melissa Kelly mentioned that there may be a role for the ECDtf in addressing the terminology of disabilities to ensure clarity for all those involved in this area. This helps when advocacy takes place and when partnerships are formed.

• Eric noted that the “Quality of Life Framework” provides a good foundation for terminology of overall wellbeing including consideration of those with disabilities.

• Eric asked how ECDtf can network with other organization more effectively.

Donald replied that a platform for the sharing of expertise was being developed by the International Alliance of Academies of Childhood Disabilities (IAACD). There will also be a focus on professional development through this platform.

• Melissa provided an overview of ECDAN, the Early Childhood Development Action Network. This network is led by the World Bank and UNICEF and affiliated with WHO. Currently ECDAN is securing funds to create a small secretariat; a technical advisory panel is forming which should include voices from other sectors such as health and child welfare. “Childhood Matters” had a good article recently about ECDAN, its goals and how it functions. There will be opportunities for the ECDtf to become more active in the network once it is fully operational.

• IAACD- ECDtf should look for opportunities for advocacy and increasing partnerships with IAACD especially given their new professional development platform.

ECDtf leadership and structure transition planning

Donald discussed the need for volunteers to take a greater role in the leadership of the ECDtf. This can be an individual or and organization. He noted that he only serves one term and there will need to be others that step forward to lead the ECDtf.

Re-draft brochure

The ECDtf brochure is being re-drafted. Donald asked for comments and ideas for the brochure to be sent to him. Please do this as soon as possible.

Announcements/ Next Steps / Other Business

Donald thanked everyone for their attendance and reminded all about the listserv where they can post and share resources and news since the ECDtf listserv consists of 400

organizations/ individuals around the world.

b) Appreciation to ECDtf colleague Hollie-Hix Small for submitting the following report on the ECDtf meeting in Mumbai, December 9, 2017:

We were delighted to have so many attendees. More than 50 delegates attended including several current ECDtf members and numerous colleagues now joining. The ECDtf welcomes new members to join any time. Those not able to attend the meeting who would like to join can email We had a full agenda and addressed the following items:

Strategic Plan Priorities & Expression of Interest Forms

The following are the 2016-2020 strategic priorities of the ECDtf for Children with Disabilities

  • Knowledge development: documents, tools, processes, research
  • Capacity building thru pre- and in-service training and technical assistance
  • Improvement and expansion of inclusive services
  • Early identification thru developmental surveillance and screening
  • Networking, knowledge transfer and information exchange
  • Asserting the rights of young children and familiesDue to time constraints, each priority area was not fiully discussed. Many members are working on various priority areas. For example, Melissa Gladstone is working to develop an open sources measurement tool (Malawi Scale). You can find this and other tools here: our collaboration with GPEDD. Note: The ECDtf as an organization is neither endorsing or discouraging use of these tools. The ECDtf enocurages users to consider carefully issues of validity, reliability, and cultural and contextual appropriateness prior to use.


➢ New members indicate their areas of interest upon sign-up and we might want to link members or create a searchable database.

➢ If you have not indicated an interest, consider which of the priorities you might contribute to

Mapping Task Team survey update

Emily Vargas-Baron provided a wonderful presentation on the preliminary results at the IDPA Congress to highlight this important global survey on inclusive ECD and ECI services. The survey is the result of a RISE Institute, UNICEF and ECDtf initiative of which many of the research advisory board members are ECDtf members. The survey was distributed in five languages (English, French, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish). The final report has been prepared and is in the review stage with an anticipated release date in February, 2018. A total of 121 countries and 426 IECD and ECI programs were included in the responses. This is a wonderful example of the type of work that may be undertaken by the ECDtf in partnership with other organizations.

Zika Task Team Update

Member, Marisol Moreno provided the following update (abbreviated): Even when the “epidemic warning” was over, many concerns remain about Zika’s impact on children and families. Regional efforts include the Colombian government’s two studies led by the Colombian Ministry of Health, National Institutes of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control to follow-up on women and children with Zika- V.Project ZEN (Proyecto Zika en Embarazadas y niños)

pregnant women and their babies. The first phase of the study was conducted in 2016 (Proyecto VEZ)

will identify adverse effects of ZIKA-V on 5000

with pregnant women. The second phase is focused on the children and will study recommendations

for improving the life conditions of the children and their families. UNICEF is leading a study about the

social security conditions for families and children impacted by ZIKA-V in Honduras, Guatemala, El

Salvador, Dominican Republic, Colombia, Brazil, and a few other countries. The study objective

includes identifying challenges and improvements in available social protections for this population.

The study explores the social protection system, services, subsidies, and supports, including social

organizations and communication efforts. Recommendations are expected. UNICEF Colombia is

looking to introduce early childhood intervention (ECI) in the Colombian context with the initiative,

Zero to Always focusing in children with delays and disabilities. ECDtf member, Emily Vargas-Baron

visited Colombia to support the initiative with a focus on children with neurodevelopmental delays,

ZIKA-V and others.