Families, early learning programs and providers, and special education staff have said that supporting children age birth-5 experiencing disability is a core equity priority in Oregon. In response, multiple agencies that serve children and families, state education agencies that make up the early learning system (Early Learning Division, Oregon Department of Education, Oregon Department of Human Services), family advocacy networks, and policy change makers have come together to create a state team to guide implementation forward across communities. and elevate the voices they serve.
Learn more about the indicators and their development on the Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (ECTA) and the National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations (NCPMI) webpages. You may also be interested in viewing an
online webinar about the indicators.
Oregon Early Childhood Inclusion (OECI) State Leadership Team includes:
- Kara Williams, Director of Inclusive Services (ODE)
- Cori Mielke, Programs FACT Oregon (Oregon’s IDEA Parent Training and Information Center)
- Eric Wells, Director, IDEA Part B (ODE)
- Gwynn Bachtle, Director, Early Learning Programs (ELD)
- Valeria Atanacio, Early Learning Tribal Affairs Liaison (ELD)
- Jenna Johnson, Oregon Center for Children and Youth with Special Health Needs (OHSU)
- Andi Bales‐Molnar, Professional Learning Systems Specialist (ELD)
- Carmen Ellis, Director, Community Systems Team (ELD)
- Lindsay Pearson, Oregon PreK and Head Start Specialist (ELD)
- Melinda Benson, Program Coordinator for Inclusive Partners (ELD)
- Katrina Miller, Infant-Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist (ELD)
- Alicia Gardiner, Director, Office of Child Care (ELD)
- Marina Merrill, Director of Research and Strategy (Children’s Institute)
- Stephen Karmol, President Elect of Oregon Association for the Education of Young Children (ORAEYC)
- Cindy Ryan, President Oregon Division of Early Childhood (DEC), Western Oregon University Faculty
- Dominic Paz, Outreach Coordinator and Mentor Coach, Early Learning Systems Initiative (ELSI) at Oregon State University
- Mindi Helmandollar‐Armatas, Prek‐3rd Grade Coordinator (ODE)
- Kevin Anderson, State Interagency Coordinating Council (SICC) Chair
- Michael Salitore, State Advisory Council for Special Education (SACSE) Member Representative
- Meredith Villines, Early Childhood Coherent Strategies Specialist (ODE)
This initiative is just beginning; six programs are starting to implement under the guidance and support of three communities with strong early learning sectors.
Read about how implementation of the inclusion indicators is improving outcomes in the 2021 Oregon Early Childhood Inclusion Indicator Annual Report (available in
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