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Improving Outcomes for Children with Disabilities & Developmental Delays

The Ripples Group assisted a State Department of Health in the development of a federally mandated strategic plan to improve outcomes for children aged 0-3 with disabilities and developmental delays. The resulting plan developed a multi-pronged approach to improving positive social-emotional outcomes. It was used as a federal, best practice example for other states in the development of their own plans.

In 2014, the federal Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) required all states to submit a comprehensive report called the State Systemic Improvement Plan (SSIP). The SSIP is a required submission by OSEP to improve efforts at the state-level which are focused on infants and toddlers with developmental disabilities.


Over the course of two years, The Ripples Group supported one State’s Early Intervention Services Program through all three Phases of the SSIP. The initial Phase I focused on data and infrastructure analysis leading to the selection of social-emotional skills development as the intended improvement outcome for the State's SSIP activities. Following selection of the intended outcome, the State’s Early Intervention leadership team, guided by Ripples, developed a comprehensive implementation plan to pursue professional development, clinical practice enhancement, data collection and quality, and consistency in improvement strategies. Throughout implementation planning, Ripples supported stakeholder engagement activities to garner buy-in from more than sixty Early Intervention programs across the State.


Implementation of SSIP activities is now underway, and The Ripples Group is gathering data in order to conduct evaluation activities for federal submission. During the third and final phase of the SSIP, Ripples will monitor implementation progress of SSIP strategies, quantify their intended outcomes, and provide technical assistance as necessary.

The State's Phase I federal submission is publicly available at the following link: State Systemic Improvement Plan.

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