Important Information to Know During Our Campus Transformation — Read More


Developmental and Social-Emotional Screenings

DSEP utilizes standardized screening measures to identify children who may benefit from early intervention or further evaluation.

The Ages and Stages Questionnaire – 3 (ASQ-3) is used to identify a child’s strengths and/or needs in five developmental domains – communication, gross motor, fine motor, problem solving and personal-social skills.

The Ages and Stages Questionnaire – Social Emotional (ASQ-SE2) and/or Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) are used to identify concerns for a child’s social-emotional development and behavior.

DSEP screenings are provided in the child’s home or community location.  The screening results, in combination with caregiver input and the observations of the DSEP Specialist, are used to determine if a child may benefit from further evaluation or supports.

Case Management

DSEP develops an Individual Care Plan (ICP) for every child who receives a screening. This plan summarizes the screening results and is shared with important parties in the child’s life. The DSEP Specialist provides ongoing facilitated case management by speaking regularly with the parent and/or caregiver, initiating needed referrals, coordinating with service providers and connecting with social workers to ensure the child is linked to recommended services.  Specialists support caregivers in navigating systems of care.

Child and Family Team Meetings

The purpose of a Child & Family Team (CFT) Meeting is to discuss the child’s strengths, any potential concerns, and possible services within the community to address any identified needs. When there are behavior and/or social-emotional concerns, a CFT meeting will be held after the screening to determine the most appropriate recommendations and supports for the child.

Behavior Support

DSEP Behavior Services may be offered to address behavior concerns or worries, as well as provide short-term support while families are waiting for a longer-term behavior service. A Behavior Specialist can work with parents and/or caregivers to understand and successfully manage the child’s behavior.  A behavior plan is created to document goals and interventions.

Child Enrichment & Infant Massage

DSEP may offer short-term, in-home Child Enrichment Sessions. This service helps support the parents and/or caregiver with implementing developmentally appropriate activities to help the child meet developmental milestones. A home activity plan is created to document goals and suggested activities to track progress.

For babies under 6 months of age, DSEP may offer Infant Massage instruction to the parents and/or caregiver. Infant Massage promotes and develops positive, healthy attachment between parent and child, helps caregiver understand baby’s cues, builds respect between caregiver and baby and develops baby’s language skills.

Staff Support at Polinsky Children’s Center

DSEP staff at Polinsky Children Center (PCC) provide support and education to PCC staff and children under the age of 6 years. The Developmental Specialist Aide works to provide the children and Residential Care Workers (RCWs) with developmental and social-emotional interventions.

DSEP staff continues to educate RCWs with ongoing monthly trainings on a variety of topics related to development, behavior, attachment, trauma, and self-care. After children discharge from PCC and a CWS case opens, a DSEP Developmental Specialist completes a developmental and social-emotional screening and supports the caregiver with any needs that arise.

DSEP at Child Welfare Services – Office Hours & Trainings

DSEP Specialists collaborate closely with assigned CWS social workers on each active DSEP case to ensure that children are successfully linked to needed developmental and social-emotional services.

All CWS social workers receive initial and ongoing trainings from DSEP.  Training topics include early childhood development, social-emotional needs of young children, trauma-informed practices and various community resources.

DSEP staff attend  a variety of CWS meetings to provide input and share information regarding DSEP Services. DSEP Specialists hold regular office hours to promote communication and consultation on active cases as well as general information about development, behavior and community resources.